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Lynbrook FD Receives Elks Club Award

Photos by Ex Capt. Steven Grogan

Chief Keith Festa’s Lynbrook Vamps had their hands full in fighting a stubborn fire in the ceiling and roof area of a commercial building at the corner of Merrick Road and Horton Avenue on Monday, March 5, 2007.  Lynbrook’s volunteers were called out at 5 PM to a reported fire at that location by a nearby business across the street that saw smoke coming from the roof of the two and one half story structure that has been under re-construction for the past six months.  Most of the construction is completed and part of the multi-use building is already occupied by a deli and a liquor store.  A drug store in the front of the building had not yet opened.

When firefighters arrived on the scene a number of construction workers working on sealing the roof at the time were found attempting to extinguish the fire with a garden hose brought out the front door and up to the roof by way of a ladder the workers were using to get up and down.  Chief Festa, after sizing up the situation, notified all responding units of a Signal 10 for a “working fire.”  Vulcan Company was first on the scene and dropped a line at the building on Horton Avenue and took the hydrant down the block, while Engine Company, in the front of the building on Merrick Road, stretched two lines into the fire building through the front door.  Truck Company’s bucket took a position in the backyard off Horton Avenue while their second ladder was placed in the parking lot of the building on Merrick and laddered that side of the building.  Members from Tally-Ho and Hose Companies assisted with moving the hose lines to the second floor and the roof area.  The Emergency Medical Company also responded and stood-by, while the Floodlight Unit set up the command post and raised its light towers to illuminate the area as it got dark. 

The layout of the ceiling and roof area of the structure caused difficulties in getting to the main part of the fire which was spreading in the ceiling and rafters and difficult to reach.    With the danger of not being able to contain the fast spreading fire, Chief Festa ordered mutual aid from our neighboring departments just in case.   Manpower and equipment that came to the scene included Valley Stream, Rockville Center, Malverne, Oceanside, Baldwin, Woodmere and Elmont.  Additionally, Hewlett, and Franklin Square sent equipment to stand-by to cover any other additional fires in Lynbrook. 

With firefighters on the first floor pulling ceilings and firefighters on the second floor opening up the walls near the roof, along with the truckies on the roof opening the roof area, the fire was finally stopped and extinguished.   

Chief Festa called for an immediate investigation of the cause of the fire by the Nassau County’s Fire Marshal’s Office which responded as did the village’s Fire Inspector and later the Building Department.  The cause of the fire is presently under investigation and the opened businesses in the building were ordered closed by the Fire Marshal and the Building Department until all structural and fire safety issues are addressed, repaired, and inspected.  Lynbrook firefighters were on the scene till 9:30 PM.  There were no reported injuries to any firefighters.      

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