Five Alarm School Fire, Philadelphia

Five Alarm School Fire

A fast-moving fire at a Philadelphia (PA) elementary school, which challenged PFD  firefighters early this morning, has finally been placed under control. Crews responded out to the 5100 block of Warren Street in the city’s Parkside section just before 6:00 a.m. after a passing police officer noticed flames coming from the Global Leadership Academy Charter School. The school serves as many as 500 students grades K through 8.The first arriving firefighters found flames shooting from the basement and quickly went to work battling the fire. A second and third alarm were quickly struck. A fourth alarm was called at 6:36 a.m. and as of 7:45 a.m., the response had been upgraded to 5 alarms.

Engine-16 arrived on scene with fire in the basement of a three story school, 50×75. B/C-11 placed all hands in service. D/C-1 reported heavy fire extending through out the building. Requested the second alarm struck and third alarms struck.

All companies went in service with heaviest water lines. Fire extended to an exposure in the rear. Fourth Alarm struck. The fifth alarm was eventually struck by command.

Firefighters established a collapse zone in the rear of the fire in anticipation of walls starting to fall. One firefighter was reported injured.

Some things to think about around the fire station today;

  • How prepared are your company or command officers to ascertain the magnitude and severity of what appears to be a fast moving fire upon arrival and quickly strike additional alarms or request mutual aid?
  • What are some of the concerns for fires within school occupancies in building structures of either Type II or III construction with vintage 1950-1960 construction?
  • Do your companies practice effective and efficient deployment and implementation of master stream devices?
  • Do you have the manpower and resources to place multiple ground and elevated master stream devices in service distributing adequate fire flows rates for sustained operations?
  • Are your companies and personnel familiar with the layout, configuration and construction features of similar structures in your jurisdiction, response, box or first-due areas?





Filed Under: BuildingsonFireCombat Fire Engagement


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