LOWER MACUNGIE FIRE DEPARTMENT
Area residents meandered among fire engines, aerial ladder trucks and other emergency vehicles, played games, watched demonstrations, picked up handouts, munched on pizza and hot dogs and enjoyed a perfect weekend day recently, at the Lower Macungie Fire Department’s annual open house at Brandywine fire station, along Sauerkraut Lane, in Lower Macungie Township.
Firefighter Andrew Miller, one of the event’s organizers, said he was expecting a crowd of about 1,000 visitors, after early-morning showers gave way to a perfect fall day.
Fire apparatus from Lower Macungie Fire Department’s Brookside Road and Brandywine fire stations, as well as equipment and volunteers from the Alburtis Fire Department, were stationed inside and outside the Brandywine station, adjacent to the East Penn School District’s Willow Lane Elementary School. The Lower Macungie and Alburtis fire departments are completing a yearlong operational merger announced in January.
Firefighters raised the American flag as the drizzle dwindled and held a brief moment of silence to remember Lower Macungie fire police officer Richard Danner, who died in October 2017.
Community partners staffed display tables inside the station, gave away food samples and talked about their partnership and support for the firefighters. Face painting, coloring books and activity stations kept the youngsters occupied while neighbors renewed acquaintances.
Vehicle rescue technicians used “jaws-of-life” hydraulic tools to cut apart a junk vehicle to demonstrate the first responders’ motor vehicle accident rescue techniques.
Lower Macungie Fire Department volunteers host the annual community event in conjunction with National Fire Prevention Week activities held annually in October.
“We’re trying to educate people not only on what they should be doing when fire strikes, but also what we do when fire strikes,” Lower Macungie Fire Chief David Nosal said.
The event included demonstrations with Judge, a retired Allentown Fire Department arson dog and a MedEvac helicopter landing. People also got a close look at the fire department’s equipment, a popular activity for the children who attended.
“We love to see the kids, the kids love to see the fire trucks, so it’s a win win for everybody,” Nosal said. “And, just as importantly, the open house is also a chance for firefighters to meet the people they serve.”