Deputy Chief: Brush Fires 20 Feet from Backyard Fence Lines
Three brush fires broke out along a hill parallel with northbound 476 during Monday rush hour. The fires were brought under control in 20 minutes by Towamencin, Upper Gwynedd and Centre Square fire companies
On Monday, under an afternoon sun, three brush fires burned on a berm, as turnpike drivers sunburned on I-476.
There is no cause for the fires, which burned portions of grass near the Kriebel Road overpass and the backyards of Flintlock Circle in Towamencin.
Towamencin Vol. Fire Co. Deputy Chief Al Staehle said the fires were about 20 feet from the fencelines of backyards along Flintlock Circle near Kriebel Road.
The fires began shortly after 3:45 p.m.
"There were three separate field fires in a 400-yard span," said Staehle.
Centre Square Fire Co., in Whitpain off 73 and 202, was the first to respond with tankers to extinguish the fires. They were in charge of the scene, Staehle said.
The northbound portion of the turnpike, between Lansdale and 202, is Centre Square territory. The southbound portion is Towamencin's.
Towamencin sent an engine to the Kriebel Road overpass and a tanker onto the turnpike. Fire crews attacked the fire from the topside of the turnpike.
Upper Gwynedd Fire Co. also dispatched one engine to lend a hand on manpower, Staehle said.
Staehle said he did not know how the fire started; in those cases, you never know.
"It varies, Staehle said on the possibilities of starting a brush fire on the side of the turnpike.
"Being it was so dry out, it could be anything," Staehle said. "It could have been from the truck exhaust being so hot, for example. There were three different fires, so who knows?"
Staehle said the fire was under control in 20 minutes.
There were no reported injuries, he said.