Fire Company Responds to Serious Accident on the PA Turnpike
By EMT Tommy Flynn
August 2, 2019

At approximately 9:37 PM on Sunday July 28th, the East Whiteland Fire Company was dispatched to mile marker 314.6 in the westbound lanes of the PA Turnpike for an auto accident. Initial reports indicated that a vehicle had rolled over with unknown injuries. Seconds later, Chester County dispatch informed our crews that there was a possibility of people trapped in the vehicle, this added an additional rescue truck from Paoli Fire Company (Station 3) as well as a paramedic from Malvern Fire Company (Station 4). East Whiteland Ambulance 5-2 arrived on location a short time later and determined that there was no entrapment, however there were a total of 8 patients who had suffered various injuries, including one pediatric patient that was ejected from the vehicle during the rollover. At that time additional ambulances and paramedic units were called to the scene , including a Medevac helicopter from Jefferson Hospital for the pediatric patient.

As EMS began tending to the victims, Deputy Chief John DeMarco arrived with Engine 5 and established command of the incident with the assistance of EMS Captain Quintin Lotz with the goal of prioritizing and organizing each patient based on the severity of their injuries, and to direct all incoming emergency units to the scene. At that time Deputy 5 requested the assistance of Lionville Fire Company (Station 47) to set up a landing zone for the helicopter at the Downingtown Interchange. A short time later the pediatric victim was flown to an appropriate facility with serious injuries, while the other victims were treated and transported by ground EMS to a local trauma center. The westbound lanes of the turnpike were shut down for approximately 1 hour and were opened after all hazards were cleared. There were no injuries to responders during this incident.

Units: Ambulance 5-1 & 5-2, Engine 5, Tanker 5, Utility 5, Deputy 5.
Mutual Aid: Malvern Fire Company EMS (4), Paoli Fire Company (3), Uwchlan Ambulance Corps (87), West End EMS (67), Lionville Fire Company (47), Downingtown Fire Company EMS (46), JeffSTAT Medevac helicopter.