Trenton, Mercer County – A haze of smoke led firefighters to the discovery of a fire within a city public works building on the evening of November 1, 2023. At approximately 7:30 p.m., Battalion 1 and Rescue 1, who were returning to their quarters after completing a prior task, observed a smoke condition in the 400 block of Brunswick Avenue. Promptly investigating the source, they determined that the smoke emanated from a substantial warehouse situated on the premises of the city’s municipal waste facility, specifically at 476 Brunswick Avenue.
To gain access, firefighters successfully entered the gated property and proceeded to make their way into the building, where they discerned that the smoke originated from a burning garbage truck. As the alarm for a working fire, known as the “All Hands” signal, was dispatched, additional firefighters from Engines 10, 1, 6, and 7, Ladders 4 and 1, as well as Special Services 1, were summoned to the scene. Equipped with a 2.5-inch hoseline, the firefighters endeavored to extinguish the fire. However, their efforts were impeded by the fact that the fire was confined within the closed trash hopper of the garbage truck.
In collaboration with a city public works employee, the firefighters safely relocated the truck to an unoccupied area on the property, thereby eliminating any potential threat to the building. Although the fire did not spread to the structure itself, a substantial amount of smoke permeated the interior, necessitating the deployment of fans to disperse it. As of 9:15 p.m., reports indicated that the ongoing endeavor to eliminate all traces of smoke from the building was still in progress. Furthermore, firefighters, in conjunction with public works personnel, continued their joint efforts to access the trash hopper, as the truck’s hydraulic lines had sustained damage, rendering the opening mechanism inoperable.
This incident serves as a reminder of the valor and resourcefulness exhibited by Trenton’s firefighters when confronted with challenging situations. Despite the complexities they encountered, their swift response and efficient collaboration with public works personnel ensured the preservation of both life and property. As investigations into the cause of the fire are underway, the community remains grateful for the dedication and professionalism demonstrated by these brave individuals.