3 Alarm Fire at New Garden Plaza
By Junior Firefighter Joey D'Ambrosio
May 12, 2020

Tuesday evening at 1740 hours the Avondale, Kennett, Longwood, Po-Mar-Lin and Hockessin Fire Companies were alerted for a reported commercial building fire in the 700 block of West Cypress Street. Deputy 23 responded on dispatch and was advised that callers saw smoke coming from the roof of the New Garden Plaza II Shopping Center. Deputy 23 arrived moments later and confirmed that report and requested the Working Fire Dispatch. Chief 23 arrived moments after and established the "Avondale Command”, while Deputy 23 handled Operations. Engine 23-1 stretched a 5” supply line from the hydrant on Cypress Street to the A side where Ladder 25 was also set up. The engine crew deployed hand-lines and forced entry into the building with the fire. Tower 24’s crew set up on the C side. Both Ladder 25 and Tower 24 crews reported to the roof and began to open the roof and searched for any possible fire in the attic/roof area. While crews were working in the building with the fire, Engine 36 stretched a second 5” line to the rear of the building and prepared to supply Tower 24. Ladder 22 arrived and set up on the A/D corner.
It appeared the fire was possibly in the attic/roof area, and spreading. Command requested 2 additional Ladder trucks to the scene which brought Hockessin and Union of Oxford Fire Companies. There was also an additional alarm added for extra manpower, due to the extensive over-haul of multiple businesses. Engine 23-1’s crew found the fire in the building and extinguished it quickly.
Additional arriving crews were tasked with assisting with roof operations and opening ceilings in each business to make sure the fire didn’t extend. Ladder 19 arrived and set up on the B side from Baltimore Pike, while Ladder 21 set up on the A/B corner from the parking lot.
The fire was held to the original business and the fire was placed under control.
The Chester County Fire Marshall’s office is investigating the incident.
Fire Police had to divert traffic from West Cypress Street on to Scarlett Road around the incident as well as closing Baltimore Pike at State Street and Mill Road in Kennett.

We would like to thank all the companies and personnel involved with this incident. Also a huge thank you to Lancaster Tanker 52’s crew for relocating our district and assisting with getting the apparatus back in service.

Units: Chief, Deputy, Assistant, Engine(s) 23-1 & 2, Rescue, Tanker, Squad, Traffic, Ambulance(s) 23-1& 2
Mutual Aid: Multiple Fire and EMS units from Chester County, New Castle County, and Delaware County. Chester County Fire Marshall's, Support Groups from CCDES, SCCRPD, and PECO