Update, noon: Emergency crews remain at the scene of a major fire that struck a pedestrian bridge on the Enola Low Grade Trail Thursday evening.

"The structure decking is pretty much a loss," said Martic Township Duane Sellers in a phone call Friday morning.

He also said there appears to be deflection in the steel trestle structure. 

Tony Williams, a spokesman for Rawlinsville Volunteer Fire Company, said crews are still at the scene monitoring parts of the bridge still on fire and preventing the spread of other brush fires.

"Ninety-eight percent of the wood is gone from the walkway," Williams said.

Engineers are also at the scene evaluating the steel parts of the bridge.

River Road, which runs underneath the bridge, is closed.

The investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing.

During the fire, a member of Rawlinsville Fire Company was taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation, Williams said. He was treated and released Thursday night.

The fire was not ruled under control overnight, but most of the units were gone by around 1 a.m., according to a Lancaster County-Wide Communications supervisor.

Check back with LancasterOnline for updates.


Thursday, April 12, 11 p.m.:

Flames engulfed an old railroad trestle turned pedestrian bridge on the Enola Low Grade Trail Thursday evening.

Emergency crews from around Lancaster County responded, including a fire marshal and the county’s hazmat team, according to commissioner Josh Parsons.

Crews were dispatched at around 5:45 p.m. Thursday to a brush fire near the bridge, Martic Forge Trestle, which runs over the Pequea Creek and River Road.

The bridge, formerly a railroad trestle, opened as a public walkway in 2015, linking the Conestoga and Martic township sections of the trail, according to a previous LNP report.

Emergency crews from around Lancaster County responded, including a fire marshal and the county’s hazmat team, according to commissioner Josh Parsons.

Falling debris made fighting the fire more difficult as crews approached from both sides of River Road, according to dispatches.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation was also being called, Parsons said. The hazmat team was going to take drone footage to assess the damage.

As of 9:30 p.m., Lancaster County Emergency Management Agency was doing what it could to support Martic Township, Parson said in an email. He did not have any information about how the fire started and said an investigation would come after the fire was under control.

By 11 p.m., a few units had been released from the scene as the blaze got under control, according to Lancaster County-Wide Communications. Still, over 30 units remained on scene, with dispatch reports indicating crews were working to put out hot spots.

Earlier woods fire in Strasburg Township

Several of the fire companies assisted in Martic Township after putting out a fire in Strasburg Township.

That fire started around 4:30 p.m. in about an acre of woods at 991 May Post Office Road, near the White Oak Campground, according to Strasburg Fire Company Chief John Stoltzfus.

Seven fire companies responded to assist, he said. 

The fire started after wind picked up embers leftover from a controlled burn the property owner had the day before, Stoltzfus said.

"It's very dry, and it's windy," he said. "As the week goes on, it's going to get worse."

"Hold off on burning until we get some rain here," he said.

About a dozen trees were cut down. No one was injured. As the fire got under control around 7:15 p.m., a few companies left to assist with in Martic Township. 

Check back with LancasterOnline for updates.


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