Approximately $15,000 of equipment stolen from Ingomar Volunteer Fire Company substation recovered

Approximately $15,000 of equipment that had been stolen from Ingomar Volunteer Fire Company over the weekend was recovered.

The equipment had been removed from the fire department substation on Perry Highway in Wexford Flats, Fire Chief Gregory Quatchak said. It’s unclear exactly when the theft happened, Quatchak said, but he suspects it happened Saturday night, July 30.

Volunteer firefighters who arrived at the station for a call on Sunday evening July 31 discovered that the station had been broken into.

“Someone had smashed a window in a door at the front, on the left side of the building and entered the building,” Quatchak said.

Firefighters discovered that the compartments where equipment is stored on the two trucks housed at the substation were open and missing items including levers, axes, hand tools and the rescue tool hydraulics often referred to as the “jaws of life,” Quatchak said.

They notified McCandless Police, who are investigating the theft.

Although the thieves have not yet been apprehended, Quatchak said, the missing equipment – ​​which he estimated at around $15,000 – was recovered.

“I actually picked up all the gear I picked up today,” Quatchak said on Tuesday, August 2.

Overnight Sunday through Monday, Pennsylvania State Police recovered the equipment.

State police were responding to a traffic accident in Bedford County, Quatchak said, when a vehicle sped through the scene. The police chased the vehicle, which sank. The driver and passengers fled the car before police could apprehend them, but left the stolen equipment in the vehicle.

The vehicle had been stolen in Virginia a few weeks earlier.

Pennsylvania State Police transported the stolen equipment to Pittsburgh, where Quatchak recovered it.

“Everything was returned,” he said. “We are very lucky. I didn’t think we would ever see him again. »

The fire department did not have security cameras to capture footage of the theft.

“We never thought we would need security cameras in a fire station,” he said, adding he was surprised someone was stealing equipment used “to save lives.”

However, they will now install security cameras, Quatchak said.

Julia Felton is editor of Tribune-Review. You can contact Julia by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .

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