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Multitude of electrical transformer fires - Coastal Highway

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Noticed all the fire equipment yesterday on Coastal Highway? In a 12-hour period, your Bethany Beach Volunteer Fire Company Firefighters responded to 6 fire alarms associated to electrical transformer malfunctions. All of these alarms transpired in the Coastal Highway corridor from the Indian River Inlet to the town limits of Bethany Beach proper. It appears an accumulation of salt on the electrical insulators were responsible. Due to the prolonged northeast winds, salt from the Atlantic Ocean was collecting on the insulators, thus diminishing there conductivity. This produced a domino effect on the effectivity of the transformers. Bethany Beach Volunteer Fire Company was tasked to assist Delmarva Power and Light to deliver high-power cleaning to the insulators. Bethany Beach Volunteer Fire Company, Asst. Chief, Justine Norman coordinated the task and was assisted by FF Cortney Koschoff. Fire personnel were tasked with soaking down the insulators to increase the efficiency. Soaking these insulators required a large supply of water. For that reason, Chief Andy Johnson from the Roxana Volunteer Fire Company was on scene with their 8000 gallon custom water tanker. Dagsboro Volunteer Fire Company responded with Engine 73-2, manned by Lt. Mike Greenstreet and Lt. Gage Betts. Chief Engineer, Bill Ireland, manned Frankford Volunteer Fire Company’s 3000 gallon tanker. During the day other fire companies, such as Millville VFC, manned by Engineer's John Stephens and Frank Rickars accompanied Engine 84-2. Lewes VFC also traveled the distance to assist by committing Engine 82-1, manned by Asst. Engineer, Ernie Stanley and FF Alex Shores to assist in the rinsing process. It is possible this process may take one more day to complete. Thanks to the work of your dedicated volunteer firefighters, power was able to be quickly restored and prevented another reoccurrence last night. Rain is not appreciated when you live at the beach. But this time, it would be greatly appreciated!!


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