By Caroline Fassett | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
December 25, 2020
A nurse. A science teacher. A gym owner. The head of a non-profit. A volunteer EMT. A wedding officiant. Six people. All linked by what has connected us all in 2020 - the coronavirus pandemic. Whatever we thought 2020 was going to be, COVID-19 changed everything.
As we come to the close of the year, NJ Advance Media asked New Jerseyans to reflect on the past 12 months, and share their thoughts and their hopes for the future. This series of essays, videos and interviews, called Can’t stop us | How Jerseyans adapted, came together and persevered in 2020, continues below.
NJ Advance Media recently sat down for an in-depth video interview with Jason Mayer, a 21-year-old volunteer and EMS lieutenant for the South Branch Emergency Services in Hunterdon County.
In this interview, Mayer reflects on the unprecedented events of this past year that stirred “a big change” from the normal for himself and for the squad — particularly at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, when the world was mostly unaware of what the virus even is.
“The biggest thing I’ll never forget is my first call with a (COVID-19) patient ... donning all this new PPE that we wear — our gowns, our N95 masks, our eye protection,” Mayer said. “And just going into this building and we’re not sure exactly what we’re up against, and then we’re just relying back on our training and our PPE to help keep us safe.”
This past week, 5 members of South Branch Emergency Service's Rescue Company completed a 32-hour Structural Collapse Rescue Operations Class.
Members worked on these following skills over the weekend, exterior raker shoring with Paratech rakers flying, solid sole and split sole wooden rakers. Interior three post vertical shore, three post vertical with initial Paratech shoring, two post vertical, laced post shore and the horizontal shore.
This was followed by both door and window shores, T-Spot shores, Double-T shores and spot shores using the Paratech struts.
South Branch Emergency Services, Inc. is pleased to announce the officers that will lead us into our first full year of operation:
Chief - Frank Setnicky
Deputy Chief - Chris Miller
Deputy Chief of EMS - H. Bucky Buchanan
Battalion Chief Station 36-1 - Joseph Olivo
Battalion Chief Station 36-3 - JT Silliman
Captain Rescue - Chris Querry
Captain EMS - James Race Jr
Lt Training - Michelle Gardner
Lt. Operations - Ryan Clancy
Lt. Rescue - Wes Hockin
Lt. EMS - Carol Dorf
President - Sharon Burham
President-Elect - Melanie Sloyer
Vice President - Scott Jarvis
Vice President - Brian Turner
Secretary - Laura Gimson
Treasurer - Chuck Collins
Financial Secretary - TBA
Board of Trustees
Scott Jarvis (2021)
Brian Turner (2022)
Becky Setnicky (2022)
James Harris (2023)
Jessica Hoos (2023)
Congratulations to you all, and thank you to all that have served before you.
Thank you to all who watch and supported the #Hunterdonstrong telethon. It was an amazing event to celebrate these eleven non-profits and our county’s first responders, like South Branch Emergency Services, who are the frontline serving our community.
When you support #Hunterdon Strong, your donation is helping the following organizations listed below. In this season of giving, it is not too late to support the Hunterdon Strong campaign.
To donate, please visit www.hunterdonstrong.org.
Sunday December 13
South Branch Emergency Services
formally Clinton First Aid and Rescue Squad
Old Route 22 Clinton
Appointments preferred For an appointment go to
smarturl.it/NJBS_Drive sponsor code 12443
or call 800-933-2566 or text Barb Pearson 732-616-8146
Please remember to eat, drink and bring your donor ID card or ID with name and photo
Last week SBES Rescue Captain Chris Querry and Full-time EMT/Rescue Technician Shannon Guiliani were hard at work training with the states best rescue professionals.
New Jersey FEMA USAR Task Force 1 held an advanced trench rescue shoring course at Hunterdon County Emergency Services Training Center. HCESTC & NJTF1 were nice enough to allow two slots for SBES members. Due to COVID restrictions students were able to attend the first day in the comfort of their own homes via a virtual lecture. Students then had a choice of two different days for two practical sessions. Over those practical days students completed 4 live trench scenarios.
The first scenario was a trench with several void spaces at different levels of the trench. This required students to back fill, use 6x6 whales, low pressure air bags, and other advanced shoring solutions.
The second scenario simulated a large repair hole in which a rescue would have needed to happen within 6 feet of the end wall of the trench. This requires rescue teams to shore not only the trench but the end walls as well. Various lengths of paratech gold struts were used to complete this evolution.
The third scenario was a “deep trench". Due to trench panels standard height of 8 feet this leaves a difficult situation were rescuers must also shore the remaining 4 feet of soil that the panel leaves. Due to soil conditions crews also had to stabilize multiple different void spaces.
The fourth and final trench was also a simulation of a repair hole. For this scenario crews were told they could not reach the opposing end wall with struts. This required the crews to use a specialized panel carried by Flemington Raritian First Aid and Rescue Squad. The panel is an 8X4 sheet of fin form with two paratech aluminum whales bottled fast to the Sheet. This allows rescuers to make a “raker” with paratech gold struts in the trench to support the end wall of the trench so rescuers can operate safely.
South Branch would like to thank HCESTC and NJ Task Force 1 for the awesome opportunity to train with them. Between soil conditions, weather conditions, and COVID restrictions it made for a challenging week but we wouldn’t have it any other way!
South Branch Emergency Services is currently looking to fill the following job openings:
This past week, eight members of our Rescue Company spent over 24 hours at the Hunterdon County Emergency Services Training Center with the outstanding Technical Rescue Instructors, learning more about Trench Rescue. After reviewing regulations and concepts, out to the grounds we went along with the other providers from across the County. The course included four 8" deep straight wall trenches, rapid 6 panel sets, void shoring trench using buttress shore, back shore, air cushions & cribbing, a lifting operation using Paratech inside wales, and a digging operation with supplemental shores.
We'd like to thank the instructional staff for another great program, and congratulate these 7 members for completing additional training to add to their knowledge toolbox.
FOR SALE: 1997 Central States International Rescue
ASKING PRICE: $59,900
Location: Hunterdon County, NJ
Electrical & Lighting
With only 15,800 miles, this used rescue truck has been very well taken care of over its life. There should be plenty of life left to respond to emergency calls in your own department with this piece of emergency equipment.
The light tower on this vehicle will provide excellent scene lighting on your response. Whether lighting a wreck scene, or making sure your fire fighters have the light needed to prepare for work, this truck can provide that.
In 1982, Lyons Garage incorporated into Central States Fire Apparatus setting the course to become a very successful fire apparatus manufacturer. In less than five years, the company was producing 50 trucks annually. Central States Fire developed a dealer network sales model which, expanded its reach outside of the upper plains. Firetrucks from Lyons were being shipped across the country. Harold and Helen grew the business steadily resisting the temptation to over-expand and over-hire to protecting against the volatile economy of the 1980s. At the core of the Boer's approach to business their commitment to taking care of their customer's needs. The 1990s brought increasing sales growth as they continued to win more business through hard work and standing behind their products. During this period, Harold & Helen formed a relationship with another fire apparatus manufacturer based in Minnesota what was then General Safety Fire Equipment now Rosenbauer Minnesota. Midway through the 90s, thoughts of protecting the business long-term became a focus for the Boer's and similarly for the owners of Rosenbauer Minnesota. In 1994 Rosenbauer International A.G,. and family owned and operated fire apparatus manufacturer based in Leonding, Austria started an effort to seek partnerships with North American fire apparatus manufacturers. Rosenbauer International was becoming one of the world's largest suppliers of fire and emergency response vehicles. The potential partnership would lead to technological exchanges and in a controlled manner building the Rosenbauer brand name in the North American market. The Boer's researched for the best option to solidify the longevity of their South Dakota operations. In 1998, Central States Fire officially joined Rosenbauer International A. G. and General Safety Fire Equipment to form for the first time Rosenbauer America as known today. At the time of the agreement, Central States Fire was active in 32 states, the new partnership brought together the two U.S. based manufacturer's dealers into one group forming a nationwide sales network.
For More Information
For more information, or to schedule an appointment to see this vehicle, email email@example.com
Note: Their is currently damage to officer #3 door over wheel well. Seller willing to negotiate an as-is sale, or have damage repaired prior to sale.
Dear Neighbors and Friends,
When someone in your community needs urgent medical treatment, emergency rescue, or rapid and safe hospital transit, South Branch Emergency Services now answer the call.
South Branch Emergency Services was created by the merger of two long-serving emergency service organizations: Clinton First Aid & Rescue Squad and High Bridge Emergency Squad. Research convinced leaders of both founding organizations and a Steering Committee of residents, business owners, and elected officials from both communities that a merger would yield quicker response times and other efficiencies. The committee provided planning and guidance that resulted in the new South Branch Emergency Services (SBES), which launched July 1st. SBES services the same northern areas of Hunterdon County that the two former organizations did: the Town of Clinton, Clinton Township, High Bridge, Lebanon Borough and parts of Franklin, Bethlehem and Union Townships.
Once a year, we ask you to help us continue this tradition of excellence. Our ability to maintain our high level of training and a safe, well-equipped fleet of emergency vehicles is a direct result of your generous support.
Reasons to give: