Lock Four junior firefighter struck by car in North Charleroi

  • By Mike Jones
    Staff writer
    mjones@observer-reporter.com April 22, 2013
Photo by Jayme Kopecek / For the Observer-Reporter Onlookers watch as a medical helicopter leaves the scene of an accident after a teen was reportedly struck by a car about 3 p.m. near the Charleroi-Monessen Bridge in the Mon Valley.

A junior firefighter in the Mon Valley was in critical condition late Monday night after he was struck by a car earlier in the day while trying to cross Route 88 in North Charleroi to assist on an emergency call.

The 14-year-old boy, who was identified as Brandon Schwalb on Lock Four Volunteer Fire Company’s Facebook page, was crossing the two-lane road near the Charleroi-Monessen Bridge shortly before 3 p.m. when he was hit by the vehicle, according to a Washington County emergency dispatch supervisor.

He was flown by medical helicopter to Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, where he was listed in critical condition late Monday. The nature of his injuries were not released late Monday night.

The teen is a son of North Charleroi Councilman Fred Schwalb, who also serves as a volunteer fireman in the small community, said Joseph A. Villella Sr., council president in the borough.

He said Brandon is a hard worker in the department.

“He’s a good kid,” Villella said.

Lock Four Volunteer Fire Co. officials said firefighters were preparing to be dispatched to assist another fire department on a call when the accident occurred. He was apparently walking to the fire hall at the time.

Fire officials did not have details on the accident and said they were awaiting more information from the hospital and investigators.

State police in Belle Vernon are handling the investigation. It was not known if the driver of the car would face any charges.


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