Radnor Fire Company chief Jim Kelly spoke with some professional pride of the conduct of emergency-responders on the scene of July 25th’s rescue of Logan Sweiter, 12, from a flood-water-swollen culvert in Wayne during a torrential rainstorm.
Kelly said his report on the evening’s events is being sent to Radnor Township officials. He shared the document with Main Line Media News Monday and provided some additional details.
Kelly said fire-company crews were already working on several rescues, aiding people trapped in cars, some of them floating on rain-swollen streets. Kelly listed “Highland, West Wayne, South Wayne, Runnymede, West Lancaster and Conestoga Rd.” as areas that had flooded-car incidents.
The call to assist, Kelly said, came from Delaware County dispatchers at 8:07 for an incident in the 300 block of St. Davids Road. One of the boys playing in the rapidly moving water with Sweiter “ran to their home and made the phone call,” Kelly said.
The creek at this point in Wayne runs above and below ground for two blocks. The scene shifted quickly to St. Davids and Aberdeen because” the boy had been swept downstream,” and it moved again to St. Davids and Pembroke and finally to Meadowbrook and Pembroke “where the creek comes out of the ground again,” Kelly said.
Two of the rescue crew wearing PDFs and secured by life-lines jumped in and grabbed the boy. Kelly said that firefighter/EMT Eric Chobert followed by Firefighter/EMT Phil Walker were the two rescuers in the water.
Kelly’s report to the township also notes the roles played by “fire-fighter Bob Bruno and other firefighters standing next to the creek.” It also notes that “A resident of the area, Dr. Beers spotted [Sweiter] in the creek, behind a house on Meadowbrook Road.”
“Firefighter/EMT Greg Lattanzi immediately started chest compressions. […] Walker started rescue breathing for the boy. The boy was placed on a stretcher and rushed to the ambulance. Radnor paramedic Doug Fuller, Narberth paramedic Rick Reynolds, EMT Abigail Helms, EMT Erin Mack, paramedic Dave Roderick, firefighter/EMT Phil Walker attended the boy enroute to Bryn Mawr Hospital. Prior to arrival at Bryn Mawr Hospital, the boy’s heart was shocked and a pulse was detected,” the report goes on to say.
Kelly said that Sweiter traveled “200 yards underground through two culverts” before being rescued.
He also said that 20 people were involved by the time the rescue had been made.
“There was a lot of chaos at the scene,” Kelly said, “but once [Sweiter had been] recovered, everything [ran] with precision, like clockwork.”
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