Members of the Haddam Volunteer Fire Company responded to 59 calls for emergency services in January. Here’s a breakdown of calls:
Medical Emergencies - 36
Fires, alarms etc. - 14
Motor Vehicle Crashes - 6
Other - 3
An early morning woodstove fire called firefighters out on Jan. 7. The fire was mostly depleted upon arrival, but precautions were taken to ensure it was extinguished completely. Firefighters inside removed the burning material from the stove while firefighters on the roof lowered a brush down the pipe to remove any smoldering creosote. As the winter wears on, please recheck fuel-fired appliances like fireplaces and wood stoves for creosote build-up.
On Jan. 10, the Fire Company responded to fire under a vehicle on Route 9, which was knocked down with a dry-chemical extinguisher. When emergency vehicles are parked on the highway, please slow down and move to the opposite side of the road to allow a wide buffer. Connecticut now has a “move over” law requiring vehicles to slow down and if driving in the lane immediately adjacent to emergency vehicles, move over at least one lane. You may notice that the Fire Company puts an extra piece of apparatus on the highway. This “blocking” vehicle is used to protect emergency personnel from oncoming traffic.
Not all calls in January took place within Haddam. Shortly after midnight on Jan. 25, the Fire Company sent Engine 1-13 to Middletown’s South District for coverage during a structure fire. Later that morning, crews provided scene safety and stood by to stop any possible extension from an electric pole fire.
Member Teresa Kuchyt was recently honored twice – earning her 20 Years of Service Pin and a special Chief’s Award. The Chief’s Award highlights Teresa’s tireless efforts as Fire Company Historian, administrator of call records and organizer for events such as Wreaths Across America, among other things. Though she prefers to remain “out of the spotlight,” the HVFC is proud to shine a light on all of Teresa’s contributions.
At the monthly meeting, members bid a fond farewell to Firefighter Mike Sapia, who took leave to serve with the U.S. Navy. Mike started as a Junior and was sworn in last year as a full member. Best of luck Mike!
The Fire Company would like to welcome three new probationary members. Olivia Drake was sworn in as the Fire Company’s first official photographer and12th female member. In this fireground support role, Olivia’s primary responsibility will be documenting HVFC activities for press material and to assist in potential fire investigations. Check out her International Fire Photographers Association page here. Kate Zarbo comes in as the 13th member of Department 13! Kate was sworn in with Tim Lucas.
In training news, Firefighter Rob Lenois earned his Fire Instructor certification.
Drills included a CPR course/refresher and a refresher course on bloodborne pathogens, Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) and EPI-Pens.