PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Fire crews have had to battle several blazes amid the growing unrest in Philadelphia. An already busy fire department is dealing with an overload of fire calls.
“On average, we have seven or eight what we call working structure fires every 24 hours. The past 24 hours, we had around 24 and the past 48 hours we’ve had probably 50 or 60,” Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel said.
The Philadelphia Fire Department has responded to 378 fires since Saturday. At least 14 have been ruled arson.
“It’s a credit to our members. Haven’t missed a beat, we have certainly brought in additional staff. We needed to do that to have the resources that we need,” Thiel said.
Philadelphia firefighters have responded to multiple vehicles, rubbish, dumpster and structural fires, including a three-alarm fire at 17th and Walnut Streets on Saturday.
“It’s a team effort, it’s a team sport. We recognize all the pain and the hurt that’s out there. Our role really is to save lives and protect property,” Thiel said.
Thiel says he’s grateful residents have allowed firefighters to continue to do their jobs.
In addition to fires, crews have also responded to thousands of medical calls.