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Fire Chief Praises Emergency Response to Flooding, Fire

Emergency responders were tested in Upper Dublin last night, and it appears they passed with flying colors.

Friday evening was strange one for Upper Dublin township, as a heavy rainstorm that hit the area around 6:30 p.m. flooded the township and left many in need of emergency assistance.

Abington Patch editor Mischa Arnosky was one of those individuals, as his car became stuck in a flash flood on Commerce Drive near West German BMW. Arnosky states that within minutes, the water level had reached his car's hood. Luckily he was able to escape unharmed, and take footage of the roadway.

There were no reported injuries around the township, despite a heavy volume of emergency calls.

"The Fire Company was dispatched for numerous water rescue calls for people stuck in rising waters in their vehicles," said Fort Washington Fire Company Chief Eric Clauson. "We had the entire fleet of trucks out, including our two boats."

Clauson also said the company responded to a house fire.

"During the height of the storm, we were dispatched for a reported house fire on the 600 block of Bethlehem Pike. We arrived to find smoke and flames from the roof due to an apparent lightening strike," said Clauson. "Due to the volume of calls and units working throughout the township, we called for a second alarm and received assistance from several neighboring companies. We were able to contain the fire to the roof area and ensure that it had not spread into the house."

Clauson praised the company's response.

"FWFC members once again stepped up and got the job done under some very difficult circumstances."

At approximately 7:30 p.m. Friday night, the Montgomery County emergency dispatch showed 20 seperate incidents of "water rescue" across the county. This included five in Upper Dublin: Loch Alsh and Spark Drive, Pennsylvania Avenue and Weldy Avenue, Jill Road and Sandra Avenue, South Limekiln Pike and Bethlehem Pike. 

Township officials urge residents to remember never to attempt to drive through standing water.

For anyone affected by the storm and flooding, e-mail editor Kyle Bagenstose at Kyle@Patch.com.

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