Update 12:40 p.m. Pool cleaning chemicals caused the evacuation of the Bethesda Marriott (5151 Pooks Hill Rd.) this morning and sent one person to the hospital for evaluation, according to Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services.
MCFRS personnel responded to a call for a chemical odor at the hotel just after 11 a.m., according to spokesperson Beth Anne Nesselt.
They determined the odor came from a pool cleaning crew that was using chemicals to treat the enclosed pool area in the hotel. There was no spill and hazmat units that were called to the scene were put back into service before reaching the incident.
Nesselt said two people at the hotel who said they were having trouble breathing were treated on-scene. One patient was transported to a local hospital for an evaluation and check-up.
Fire officials ventilated the area and the hotel has returned to business as usual.
Montgomery County Fire and Rescue officials are urging people to stay safe this weekend with warm weather expected to continue.
Forecasts call for more 90-degree temperatures on Saturday. MCFRS included a list of common sense tips for staying safe in the heat:
1. Pre-hydrate, hydrate and re-hydrate.
During hot weather you will need to increase your fluid intake, regardless of your activity level. Drink plenty of fluids in advance, during and after activities and don’t wait until you’re thirsty to hydrate.
Warning: If your doctor generally limits the amount of fluids you drink or has prescribed a diuretic, check with your physician for guidance.
2. Dress for the heat.
Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing. Light colors will reflect some of the sun’s energy. Limit your direct exposure to the sun and wear a hat for extra protection.
3. Monitor those at high risk.
Extreme heat can be hazardous to your health and although anyone can suffer from heat-related illness, some people are at greater risk than others. Those most at risk for heat-related illnesses include children, older adults, those that work or exercise outside and those with pre-existing medical conditions. Elderly, low income or individuals with disabilities in Montgomery County in need of a fan can call 311 for information on free fans.
4. Children and cars – use common sense.
Never leave infants, children, pets or the elderly in a parked car where temperatures can become life-threatening in minutes, even with the windows rolled down. Additionally, hot interior surfaces of a car can burn a child’s skin. Before you put your child in a car that has been parked in a warm/sunny spot, check the temperature of the carseat or upholstery first.
MCFRS was dispatched to the Little Falls Swim Club (5001 Little Falls Dr.) at about 4:43 p.m. on Wednesday for the report of a drowning, spokesperson Beth Anne Nesselt said. When they arrived, they found the lifeguards pulled the boy out from the bottom of the deep end of the pool, which is about 12 feet deep, and that he was unresponsive and not breathing.
The lifeguards immediately began doing CPR on the boy and he regained consciousness, Nesselt said.
He was stable and alert during transport by MCFRS to a pediatric medical facility.
The incident highlights the importance of pool safety as pool season begins. There are about 3,500 unintentional, non-boating related drownings per year in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control. Most involve children. Last summer, a 7-year-old girl at the River Falls Community Center pool in Potomac nearly drowned.
Montgomery County Police are investigating a drowning in which a 15-year-old Laurel male was found dead at the Rocky Gorge Reservoir, straddling Montgomery and Howard Counties.
Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services last week did a press conference to remind people not to attempt to swim in the Potomac River while visiting Great Falls National Park this spring and summer.
A day before, a team of MCFRS personnel was training on the river just as a group of four swimmers jumped in for a dip. The crew was able to rescue one swimmer who had become trapped by powerful currents under the water that often aren’t visible from the surface.
“It’s very inviting, especially when it starts to get hot so they want to try and get in cool off, and they think, ‘It doesn’t look so bad,’ and it’s deadly,” MCFRS Lieutenant Chief Moe Witt told County Cable Montgomery.
Personnel from MCFRS, the National Park Service, Park Police and Fairfax County Fire & Rescue said they regularly see people walking the trails or enjoying the park decide to jump into the water to cool off.
It’s not allowed in the Potomac River Gorge, the 14-mile stretch of the river from the Key Bridge to Great Falls in Potomac. Before Memorial Day, the authorities wanted to get the word out: Don’t jump into the Potomac.
Video via County Cable Montgomery
Montgomery County Police today identified the man killed in yesterday’s garage collapse at Westfield Montgomery Mall.
Carroll Dexter Wills, 57, of the 1600 block of Mason Court in Prince Frederick, Md., died after a 50,000-pound slab of concrete fell on him and another construction worker doing renovation work on the garage, which will include a luxury movie theater and new food court for the Democracy Boulevard mall.
Police are in charge of the investigation into the incident. The concrete collapse happened around 1:45 p.m. as Wills worked on the second floor of the garage. The underside of the third floor, which contained a steel I-beam, fell on Wills and another construction worker, according to Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services.
After nearly four hours, MCFRS personnel were able to extract the other construction worker, who was transported via helicopter to Baltimore Shock Trauma with severe injuries.
Rebecca Kresge, who identified herself as a family member of the injured worker on her Twitter account, said the man was set to undergo a couple surgeries to instill as much mobility to his right arm as possible.
“He’s alert and very strong. He is doing just fine considering what happened,” Kresge wrote.
Rescue and medical officials were talking to the man throughout the extrication process, MCFRS Assistant Chief and spokesperson Scott Graham said on Thursday. Rescue workers had to temporarily stop the extrication attempt after noticing shifting concrete.
NBC4 published video of the injured worker alert and flashing a thumbs up sign as he was transported from an ambulance to waiting helicopter at a local park.
Tiger Talks Future Of Congressional Tournament — Tiger Woods was at Congressional Country Club on Monday for an annual press gathering ahead of his AT&T National PGA event (June 24-30) and discussed the possibility of moving the tournament to another course in 2015. Congressional’s membership will vote later this year on whether to bring the tournament back from 2015-2017. The Tiger Woods Foundation, which hosts the event, must also re-up with AT&T or find another sponsor. [Washington Post]
Suburban Hospital Breast Cancer Experts Discuss Risk-Reducing Mastectomies — After actress Angelina Jolie revealed she had a preventive double mastectomy because of a BRCA gene mutation known to raise the risk of breast cancer, two doctors at Suburban Hospital answered questions about the procedure and in what circumstances to pursue the operation. [Suburban Hospital]
Congressman John Delaney Backs Doug Duncan For County Exec — First-term Sixth District Congressman John Delaney (D) endorsed former County Executive Doug Duncan for the same job in next year’s Democratic Primary. Duncan has announced his intention to run for his old job and it’s expected County Executive Isiah Leggett will run against him. The only candidate to have officially filed paperwork is Councilmember Phil Andrews (D-Gaithersburg). Duncan endorsed Delaney in his Congressional race last year. [Maryland Juice]
MCFRS Celebrates National EMS Week — The Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service is celebrating National Emergency Medical Services Week by recognizing its dual role firefighters/EMTs and firefighters/paramedics. [MCFRS]
Flickr pool photo by diarmaid20814
The afternoon wreck yesterday on the I-270 spur that left rush hour traffic snarled resulted in serious injuries for one woman and involved a child who apparently avoided significant injury because she was in a car seat.
MCFRS spokesperson Beth Anne Nesselt said rescue workers were dispatched just after 4 p.m. for the report of an overturned minivan on the northbound I-270 spur just south of Democracy Boulevard. They found a minivan and tractor trailer had been involved in a collision.
The minivan was on its roof and the adult female driver was trapped. Nesselt said it took about 20 minutes to extricate the driver, who was sent to a local trauma center with serious injuries.
A child passenger in the van was found in an intact car seat with no apparent injuries. The child was taken to a hospital for evaluation.
“Based on our initial info, the car seat did a pretty amazing job,” Nesselt said.
The crash and rescue shut down the road and caused a reported 8.5-mile backup during the early afternoon rush.
Photo by B-CC Rescue Squad via Twitter
Former Fire Chief Thomas Carr, who began his public safety career as an 18-year-old volunteer paramedic with the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Rescue Squad, died on Wednesday following complications from a rare neurological disorder.
Carr left Montgomery County in 2008 to take over as Chief of the Charleston [South Carolina] Fire Department. Charleston was Carr’s hometown and the Fire Department there was reeling from a 2007 furniture store fire that left nine of its fire fighters dead.
In April 2010, Carr announced his diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease. Carr had an aggressive neurological disorder called Multiple System Atrophy that causes symptoms similar to Parkinson’s. He was 59.
Shortly after his announcement, Carr won Fire Chief Magazine’s 2010 Career Chief of the Year award for the improvements and leadership he brought to Charleston’s Department.
In a press release on Thursday, Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services Assistant Chief and spokesperson Scott Graham said Carr began his fire department career in Bethesda in 1973. He was hired as a career firefighter/paramedic in 1977 and rose through the ranks to become Montgomery’s first operational fire chief in 2004, after the County Council passed legislation to reshape MCFRS.
“The fire service has lost a great leader and we’ve lost a great friend,” Fire Chief Richard Bowers said in the release. Bowers followed Carr as fire chief. “Chief Carr was respected nationally and internationally. Under his leadership, the department added four-person staffing, collective bargaining for volunteers and raised education and training standards. He led the department’s successful efforts to become a nationally accredited fire department and was a man of great vision, passion and integrity who led from the heart. His impact will be felt for many years to come.”
Carr is survived by his wife Anne, son West, daughter Amy, his parents, brother and sister.
Photo via Montgomery County
MCFRS responded to a fire alarm in the mid-rise building at the corner of Elm Street and Woodmont Avenue this morning for what they say is a fan issue in a ground floor restaurant.
People in the building were evacuated after the fire alarm went off at about 9:30 a.m.
Fire fighters who arrived on the scene said they found no fire and that the alarm was set off by smoke from the kitchen in Kraze Burgers (4733 Elm St.) on the ground floor of the building. This problem occurred before when employees fired up the grill in the morning, according to scanner traffic.
MCFRS checked all floors of the building and has called code enforcement to check the fans above the restaurant’s kitchen.
UPDATED STORY | MCFRS is on the scene of a multi-car accident at Nicholson Lane and Rockville Pike that involves as many as eight cars and a county Ride On bus.
The accident happened around 1:35 p.m. just east of the intersection, where multiple ambulances are on the scene and traffic is snarled.
Photos via TrafficLand.com and @chrisrhopkins
Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services spokesperson Beth Anne Nesselt said a medical unit received a call at about 9:31 a.m. for an accident at a house in the 5500 block of Uppingham Street, near the intersection of Little Falls Parkway and River Road.
First responders arrived to find a man in his 20s had fallen from the first floor of the home into the basement.
Nesselt said the man was immobilized as a precaution and he never lost consciousness.
UPDATE 2:50 p.m. MCFRS crews are on the scene of a brush fire in the wooded residential area of the intersection of Burning Tree Road and Beech Tree Road. Crews reportedly have the roughly quarter-acre fire under control.
ORIGINAL With weather conditions ideal for the rapid spread of brush fires, the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service is advising residents not to throw cigarettes on the ground and to be careful with any flammable materials.
A fire in a small section of mulch in the Giant grocery store parking lot on Arlington Road was easily extinguished before reaching any trees just after 11 a.m. And MCFRS will be on alert for similar incidents because of dry, windy conditions.
From the National Weather Service:
…RED FLAG WARNING IN EFFECT FROM NOON TODAY TO 8 PM EDT THIS EVENING FOR EASTERN WEST VIRGINIA…NORTHERN AND CENTRAL MARYLAND… NORTHERN VIRGINIA AND WASHINGTON DC…
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN STERLING VIRGINIA HAS ISSUED A RED FLAG WARNING FOR THE POTENTIAL OF RAPID WILDFIRE GROWTH…WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM NOON TODAY TO 8 PM EDT THIS EVENING. THE FIRE WEATHER WATCH IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.
* RELATIVE HUMIDITY…20 TO 25 PERCENT.
* WINDS…NORTHWEST 15 TO 20 MPH WITH GUSTS UP TO 30 MPH.
* FUEL MOISTURE…5 TO 8 PERCENT.
* IMPACTS…THE COMBINATION OF GUSTY WINDS AND DRY FUELS WILL PROMOTE RAPID SPREAD OF ANY UNCONTROLLED FIRES. PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…
A FIRE WEATHER WATCH MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS MAY OCCUR. LISTEN FOR LATER FORECASTS AND POSSIBLE RED FLAG WARNINGS.
A RED FLAG WARNING MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ARE EITHER OCCURRING NOW…OR WILL SHORTLY. A COMBINATION OF STRONG WINDS…LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITY…AND DRY FUELS WILL CREATE EXPLOSIVE FIRE GROWTH POTENTIAL.
UPDATE 9:10 a.m. A pedestrian was struck just before 8 a.m. today in the 5200 block of Saratoga Avenue and is in serious condition, according to police.
A medevac helicopter landed near the Westbard Shopping Center to transport the adult female victim to the Baltimore Shock Trauma Center.
Police are on the scene and are starting their investigation at the corner of Saratoga Avenue and Westport Road, in a neighborhood just north of River Road. Both roads are closed.
Police say the vehicle involved stayed on scene.
UPDATE 4:50 a.m. A fire in the electrical room of the Hyatt Regency Bethesda early this morning left one worker injured and more than 400 guests and forced to move to Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School, according to MCFRS spokesman Capt. Scott Graham.
An explosion in the electrical room after midnight in the garage of the hotel (7400 Wisconsin Ave.) sent the worker to the burn center of Suburban Hospital according to Graham.
The fire was held in check by the sprinkler system, but the guests at the hotel were moved in Ride On buses to the gym at nearby B-CC High School around 2:15 a.m., where they are being assisted by the Red Cross.
Wisconsin Avenue in both directions was closed during MCFRS’ response to the fire.
Students at B-CC and all Montgomery County Public Schools are on spring break this week. Some hotel guests transferred to other area hotels.
At 4:45 a.m., fire fighters allowed guests back on to Ride On buses to retrieve medicine or other belongings from the hotel.
Capt. Scott Graham reported fire fighters had cleared the hotel and Wisconsin Avenue will reopen by 6 a.m.
Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services has evacuated a building of the National Military Medical Center’s Carderock Clinic at 9500 MacArthur Boulevard after a chemical spill, according to Fire spokeswoman Beth Anne Nesselt.
Building 60, which holds a Navy Medical cardiac unit, was evacuated around 11:30 a.m. after an unknown chemical was spilled in the loading dock area, Nesselt said.
MCFRS is currently isolating the area and shutting down HVAC units inside the building.
Nesselt said Hazmat units will arrive at the scene to determine what type of chemical spilled, how much of it spilled and what steps to take next.