Rush Hour Accidents Cause Traffic Headaches
By Lieutenant Anton Bilski
March 23, 2023

Around 1520 hours on Thursday afternoon, Avondale Fire Company was dispatched to the intersection of Gap Newport Pike and Penn Green Road for a reported two vehicle auto accident.

Ambulances 23-1 and 23-3 responded on dispatch with Assistant 23 and Rescue 23 responding shortly after them. Ambulance 23-3 arrived first on the scene and reported a sedan had struck a tractor trailer and caused an active diesel fuel leak traveling down Route 41. Assistant 23 (Owens) and Rescue 23 arrived at the same time. Assistant 23 established Route 41 Command.

After recent trainings in hazardous materials, Avondale's crews were prepared to handle this type of emergency. Crews from Rescue 23 and both ambulances began damming and diking the diesel leak by utilizing oil dry, oil absorbing pads, brooms and dirt. By doing this technique, crews were able to both soak up and divert the hazardous fluid from continuing even further down Route 41.

But due to the shear volume of leaking diesel fuel stretching from Penn Green Road and halfway down Route 41, Blittersdorf's Towing was called in for both vehicles as well as their Incident Response Unit. This unit brought to the scene multiple bags of spill tackle absorbent that was laid down across Route 41. Blittersdorf's also brought a street sweeper on a Bobcat to quickly sweep up the road.

Due to this incident, the nearby cross streets around Route 41 and Penn Green Road caused a major traffic gridlock and plenty of headaches for drivers.

As cleanup efforts were nearing the end, Chester County Fire Board notified Route 41 Command of a second accident in front of the Auto Zone on West Cypress Street with a vehicle on its roof. Rescue, Chief, Deputy, Ambulance 23-1, Medic 94-2 and Medic 94-3 all responded within seconds of dispatch.

While responding, an Avondale Fire Police Officer arrived on the scene and confirmed the report of a single vehicle on its roof, off the road with no entrapment.

Chief 23 (Cole) arrived and established Cypress Street Command while Deputy 23 (Bessicks) had operations. Crews made sure the vehicle was stable and assisted EMS with patient care. After EMS transported, Rescue 23's crew began debris clean up and awaited Blittersdorf's Towing to retrieve the vehicle.

Final crews cleared at 1820 hours after almost 3 hours of traffic related incidents and finally opened up all nearby roadways relieving the traffic jams that were caused by both incidents simultaneously.

Units: Ambulance(s) 1 & 3, Chief, Deputy, Assistant, Rescue, and Traffic 23
Mutual Aid: Medic 94, Blittersdorf's Towing, Southern Chester County Regional PD