Police and fire crews inundated with calls at peak of storm Tuesday

Police and fire crews inundated with calls at peak of storm Tuesday



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Calls for assistance flooded in to local police and fire departments during the peak of the tropical storm Tuesday afternoon. 

Meriden firefighters were extremely busy during the peak of the storm, Chief Kenneth Morgan said Wednesday. At one point there were up to 50 calls in their queue, mostly reports of downed wires. Extra firefighters were on duty to deal with the approximately 200 calls for service during the evening shift.

“Our crews handled it well,” Morgan said. 

Southington fire crews handled 97 calls within a 24 hour span. Southington police Lt. Keith Egan said the police department experienced some disruption in services when the power and other utilities were damaged in the storm. 

“We were able to transition through preplanning, extra manpower and in cooperation with (the fire department) to continue to provide coverage throughout and following the storm,” Egan said Wednesday. “We are currently still operating on our backup generator.  All of our critical systems, CAD, phones, etc., continue to work with some modifications.”

Egan said police responded to 196 public hazard calls, nine motor vehicle calls and 22 medical calls during the storm. He noted that as of Wednesday afternoon Eversource reported 25 transmission lines down in town and was anticipating a multi-day restoration effort. 

The storm closed about 15 to 20 roads in Meriden by early Wednesday.  

As of Wednesday afternoon, Eversource reported 618,874 outages throughout the state. There were 11,004 in Cheshire, 9,586 in Southington and 8,008 in Meriden.

‘Long windy day’

Wallingford Fire Chief Richard Heidgerd said his firefighters had to deal a garage fire in the middle of the storm. A three car detached garage at 188 Williams Road caught fire around 4:24 p.m. on Tuesday. There were no reported injuries. 

Michele Deisser, who lives off Mansion Road in Wallingford, lost power around 3:30 p.m. Tuesday and as of Wednesday at noon it was not restored. Deisser said she thankfully did not have any damage to her home or vehicle.

 “The complex has numerous trees that fell down in the front and also behind some units. It’s a mess,” Deisser said Wednesday.

She compared the storm to a May 2018 microburst that brought 100 mph winds to the area. 

“Yesterday was a long windy day. I was more scared for the microburst than I was for the storm yesterday,” Deisser said.

Heidgerd said the damage from Tuesday’s storm was more wide ranging throughout town compared to the microburst. 

“It was much more widespread, not as concentrated in one area of town,” Heidgerd said. 

lsellew@record-journal.com203-317-2225Twitter: @LaurenSellewRJ


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