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Cops, Courts & Fire -Bristol Borough

Falls Police: No Credible Threats In Area

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With tensions running high, the unsubstantiated rumor mill in full throat, Police from one Levittown municipality said there have been no major incidents of looting or vandalism in its jurisdiction.

“At this time, we have received no credible threats against any of the businesses in Falls Township. Please remain calm and we will all get through this together,” a social media post from the Falls Township Police Department said.

“We have assigned additional patrols to deter any potential acts of vandalism, property destruction and theft.”

Rampant unfounded reports from locals on social media continue to circulate on Tuesday.

On Monday, Walmart in the Levittown Towne Center announced it was closing early spurring rumors and false reports to invoke further fear into a situation all ready at peak levels throughout the area.

The Tullytown Police Department asked stores in the shopping center to also close once Walmart decided to do so, officials said in a statement posted online.

In nearby Bristol Borough and Township word of a tentatively scheduled rally for Saturday fed the rumor mill the last 24 hours.

Officials from both municipalities well involved with the planning say a meeting with organizers and officials is scheduled for later this week to work details for the “peaceful rally.”

In Bucks County, peaceful protests have taken place in Doylestown and Levittown in recent days as law enforcement geared up for any potential isssues.

The murder and subsequent arrest of now fired officer, Derek Chauvin has led to protests and demonstrations throughout the country prompting peaceful protests, demonstrations, rioting,  heated discussions about race, inequality, and changes to  policing.

Chavuin was charged with third degree murder and second degree manslaughter on Friday by prosecutors in Hennepin County.

A video of the alarming incident showing Chauvin (a white officer) leaning on the neck of Floyd with his knee went viral earlier this week.

Chauvin held his knee against  Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds according to the criminal complaint  filed by prosecutors.

Still yet as evening approaches law enforcement continues to keep a watchful eye throughout the Lower Bucks area.

From Falls Township Police Department:  Please know that the Officers of the Falls Township Police Department will continue our work to protect the citizens, businesses and property of this community that we love. We are closely monitoring the situations regarding civil unrest in Philadelphia and NJ. We are working with our Law Enforcement partners throughout Bucks County. We have assigned additional patrols to deter any potential acts of vandalism, property destruction and theft. At this time, we have received no credible threats against any of the businesses in Falls Township. Please remain calm and we will all get through this together.

Ms. Joanne Ames is a Falls Twp resident who handles financial transactions, and for feature and important stories copy edits content when she's not working her other job as retail manager at a local cigarette/vape outlet. Ames' free time is dedicated to hanging out with her "Mom" ensuring she is cared for, comfortable, and loved at all times. Ames is also a crazed Eagles fan and who spends much of her Sunday's reminding LBS Publisher/Editor Jeff Bohen "The Giants Suck.." Ames recently has gotten the reporting bug and is in the midst of preparing for her first big story.

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Bensalem Township

Bensalem Twp Council To Vote On Volunteer Fire Company Consolidation Monday Night

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Just under two years ago at a Bristol Borough Council meeting, officials were getting an update on the then planned fire company consolidation effort by Steve Reeves,  president of the Bristol Borough Fire Association. At the time, talk of consolidating fire companies in the borough and Bristol Township was a hot topic.

During his presentation Reeves mentioned consolidation talks of the Bensalem fire company volunteer services were also in progress. At the time tidbit was not in the public domain.

Credit: Submitted

Now after two years of planning, the Bensalem Township Council will vote on a resolution to form The Bensalem Volunteer Fire Department at its next meeting Monday night.

If the resolution is passed, the six legacy fire companies, including Cornwells, Eddington, Newport, Nottingham, Trevose, and Union, will be consolidated into one volunteer fire department. This consolidation plan is necessary to ensure adequate fire/emergency response within the township because of reduced membership amongst the current companies, a press release announced late Friday afternoon.

Credit: Submitted

Reeves knew what he was talking about at the time. Lower Bucks Source in the following days reached out to area first responder sources, officials and Bensalem area volunteer firefighters. No one anywhere would go on or off the record. LBS was directed, by Battalion Chief/Fire Marshal Robert Sponheimer, to the Deputy Director of Public Safety Robert Race who politely declined to respond to a request for comment at the time.

Credit: Submitted

Late last year, according to a Lower Bucks Times report, Bensalem officials spoke rather openly about dwindling volunteer numbers.  This led William McVey, director of public safety, to ask for council approval to apply for a SAFER (Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response) grant through FEMA, which was subsequently approved in November by council.

This past February the township announced the hiring of Mark Antozzeski as the first career Fire Chief in Bensalem history. He is leading the volunteer fire services, as well as Bensalem Fire Rescue, career staff. McVey told Bensalem Patch.com the hiring was an important piece of the consolidation process.

 

Credit: Submitted

Earlier this month,  Nottingham Fire Department Chief Ron Harris was named the Bensalem Volunteer Fire Department Deputy Chief as part of the consolidation effort, according to published report. 

Credit: Submitted

Beginning Friday evening, shortly after receiving the Bensalem announcement on the expected consolidation vote, first responder sources Lower Bucks Source contacted said that back in 2022 when first contacted they declined to comment because the topic was sensitive in nature and a real possibility of backlash existed and concerns about “sabotaging” the process were also omnipresent. Those sources again declined to comment on the record.

Consolidation Efforts in Bristol Borough & Bristol Township

In February, Bristol Borough voted to consolidate their volunteer fire services. Prior to that step the borough approved applying for a Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program Grant in the amount of $1.5 to build a new fire house at a yet to be determined location.

As far back as February of 2022, a smaller plan in size and scope was being discussed in Bristol Township involving Newportville Fire Company #1, Third District Fire Company with career fire personnel from the township which came off the heels of  a fire study completed in 2020.  That plan is no longer in play, fire officials say. Third District Fire Chief Howard McGoldrick said it’s a “complete mystery” why Newportville ultimately decided against the discussed move and merger.

” Volunteer fire services in Bucks County are changing right before our eyes” one first responder said last year.

Credit: Submitted

In each of the consolidation efforts, public safety, declining volunteer numbers and increasing costs have been cited repeatedly by officials publicly.

“It’s just not sustainable anymore financially for fire companies, the municipalities they serve, and taxpayers. It’s consolidate or die”, a high ranking first responder source said Friday.

Bensalem Council is expected to pass the resolution with its vote tonight.

Editor’s Note:  Each of the images in this story come from the volunteer fire companies serving Bensalem Township.

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Bensalem Township

Thunderstorm Rips Through Lower Bucks Area Friday Evening

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A Friday evening thunderstorm ripped through the Lower Bucks County area causing power outages, trees to come down, and other related damage.

The storm swept the area beginning around 6 p.m. just as the evening rush hour for motorists was ending.

Scattered wind gusts were expected, with up-to 1/4 inch sized hail and intermitted lightening were called for by forecasters before the storm landed.

Credit: Submitted

In the Winder Village section of Bristol Township, public safety officials say a tree landed on a vehicle while the motorist was operating the vehicle. The driver was able to get out of the vehicle under his own power with no injuries, Third District Fire Company officials said.

Credit: Submitted

 

In the Bensalem -Bristol areas, dozens are still without power, as of 7 a.m. Saturday morning, Information, according to PECO, is still pending assessment in the Croydon  and West Bristol sections of Bristol Twp.

Credit: PECO

No information on any injuries sustained as a result of the storm at this time.

Approximately 400 customers remain without power, PECO officials say in the Lower Bucks County area as of publication time.

Credit: Joe Nelson

 

 

 

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Breaking News - Bensalem Township

“Armed Man” Initiates Lockdown for Levittown Elementary School Thursday, No Charges Filed

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Brookwood Elementary

**Update: Friday 4 a.m.**

Earlier Thursday, Brookwood Elementary in Bristol Township instituted their “Lockdown Procedures” due to an alleged report of a “armed man” in the area of the school.

Parents received a community update notice which said they were in lockdown due to a security concern in a nearby neighborhood.  The notice said updates would be provided as they occur and to please not come to or contact the school.

Police dispatched to the elementary school raced up Haines Road one witness told the publication taking one man into custody, authorities  said.

“There was an incident involving an adult male, who was in possession of a firearm near the school crossing guard post (Kenwood Drive North & Key Lane.) There is no information at this time that he attempted to enter the school. The matter is under investigation. No one has been arrested as of this time,” said Lt. Sean Cosgrove in an e-email exchange with Lower Bucks Source, shortly after the incident.

At 1:30 p.m., the lockdown was lifted without further incident.

 

 

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