By now you may have heard about the deadly fire in South Plainfield, New Jersey around 3:00 this morning that left five people dead, including four children. The story is covered in the video above and by our friend Bill Schumm at Firegeezer.com.
Some of the articles I have read refer to a car crash in the same block this morning. A few neighbors say it was the noise of that crash that woke them. News reports indicate that South Plainfield Fire Department volunteer Nick Smith was in his personal SUV heading to the scene when it collided with another car and rolled three times. Despite the violent collision, Smith went to work at the fire.
It isn't clear who was in the other vehicle. That driver suffered minor injuries and has been described in one article as a "a good Samaritan going to help with the fire" and in other articles as a member of a volunteer fire department or rescue squad.
A volunteer firefighter was treated for minor injuries sustained in a car crash outside the burning house, at 1407 Clinton Avenue at Laurel Lane. Officials said the vehicle of the firefighter, Nick Smith, collided with another car. His sport-utility vehicle rolled over three times, the fire chief, Thomas Scalera, said, but Mr. Smith got out and went to work, joining more than 40 volunteers despite his minor injuries. Chief Scalera said the driver of the other car, who was not identified, was not seriously hurt.
… he collided with another vehicle driven by a good Samaritan going to help with the fire. The accident coincidentally took place right outside the burning home.
Scuffed and scraped, Smith managed to climb out of the vehicle and start unrolling hoses for firefighters set up at the scene of the two-alarm fire, Scalera said.
His fellow firefighters had to persuade Smith to get treated at a local hospital, Scalera said.
Once released from the hospital, he returned to the firehouse on Maple Avenue after the fire was brought under control to help pack up hoses, Scalera said.
Smith suffered a swollen lip and scrapes on his face, the chief said.
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