Middletown Township, NJ - On Sunday morning, April 6, 2014 several northern Monmouth County fire departments will conduct a large scale training exercise to practice the deployment of water "pipelines" at Fort Hancock on Sandy Hook. During the drill, water will be drafted from the Sandy Hook Bay at the Coast Guard Station and pumped through 2 pipelines consisting of a series of fire engines connected by large diameter hoses along Officers Row and eventually discharged from the tops of ladder trucks almost a mile away. Participating in the exercise will be the Monmouth County Pipeline Strike Teams 1 & 7.
The Monmouth County Fire Marshall has designated seven Pipeline Strike Teams throughout the county. Each Strike Team is made up of 7 pumper engines which carry 5 inch large diameter supply hose and are capable of pumping at least 1,500 gallon per minute of water. These teams are utilized on large fires where the fire hydrant system cannot provide sufficient water, as well in areas that do not have fire hydrants. The Strike Team units are able to deploy their hose and relay a large volume of water to the fire scene from a water source up to a mile away. In essence, the Pipeline Strike Teams act as temporary above ground fire hydrant systems. Each Strike Team is required to conduct at least one live raining drill each year to maintain their certification.
Strike Team 1 is comprised of Northern Monmouth County area fire department units from Cliffwood Beach, Hazlet, Holmdel, Keansburg, Keyport, Laurence Harbor, Matawan, Middletown and Union Beach. The participating fire departments are all members of the Bayshore Active Fire Chiefs Association.
The Middletown Township Fire Department supplies all the resources for Pipeline Strike Team 7 from the following Fire Companies: Navesink, Brevent Park, Community, Port Monmouth, River Plaza, Lincroft, and Old Village.
Since its formation, Strike Team 7 has been called into action many times to assist other fire departments with very large fires. Recent incidents include the Buhler Car Dealership & the Long Branch West End multiple building fires in 2012, the Beachway Condo fire in Keansburg in 2010, and the 2007 Sea Bright Fountains apartment complex fire.
The Monmouth County Sheriff Department's Mobile Command Vehicle as well as the Middletown Township Fire Police, Field Communications, and EMS units will also participating in the training exercise.
The drill is being conducted in cooperation with the National Park Service, Gateway National Recreational Area and the US Coast Guard Station Sandy Hook.