Written by Michael P. Walsh
WEST HAVEN, CT – The three West Haven Fire Departments hailed the community’s 100th anniversary while celebrating their fire department at the Centennial Fire Expo on Saturday.
The five-hour exhibit, presented by the City of West Haven’s Centennial Celebration Committee, was part of a series of free six-month events commemorating the birth of the community in 1921 and its incorporation by the Assembly general as the youngest municipality in Connecticut, said Mayor Nancy R. Rossi, honorary chair of the committee.
Families, firefighters, and paid and volunteer firefighters from across the state came to see the range of engines and trucks, including vintage fire apparatus, on display in the parking lot of the Savin Conference Center Rock, as well as a fire service exhibit in the downtown Savin Rock Museum with West Haven Engine & Hose Company 1.
The colorful fleet included devices from the three West Haven Fire Departments and the Orange Volunteer Fire Department.
The large public display, also held in front of Savin Rock, was curated by West Haven Fire Department Chief James P. O’Brien, West Shore Fire Department Chief Stephen Scafariello, Chief of the West Shore Fire Department City of West Haven Allingtown Fire Michael R. Terenzio and Committee Chair Beth A. Sabo.
The West Haven Fire Department consists of the West Haven Independent Fire Department, which serves the First Fire Tax, or Center, District, and the West Shore Independent Fire Department, which serves the 2nd District of Shore. It also includes the formerly independent 3rd District Allingtown Fire Department, which was taken over by the city in July 2012 and is now known as the City of West Haven Allingtown Fire Department.
Together, the departments have operated for 350 years – West Haven since 1888, Allingtown since 1907, and West Shore since 1918.
The exhibit included a hazardous material trailer, rides in the 1935 West Haven Mack fire truck, fire goods vendors and Lucky Dog and Franco’s Fried Dough-Licious food trucks, as well as boats from rescue departments, including the West Shore Amphibious Marine Unit.
It also included educational demonstrations on smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, drone technology, fire sprinkler systems, first aid and fire prevention code and investigations.
Sparky the Fire Dog interacted with the kids and the Acoustic Mafia musical duo performed Top 40 hits.
West Haven Firefighters, led by Fire Marshal Keith T. Flood, demonstrated the services 35-foot smoke trailer and showed children what to do in the event of a fire.
West Haven firefighters also demonstrated the Jaws of Life tool by lifting open parts of a vehicle to free those trapped inside.
As part of the Allingtown Child Car Seat Installation and Inspection Program, Captain Jason Cameron and firefighters Mike DiMassa and Thomas O’Toole installed car seats for people. They also inspected those already installed to make sure the portable seats were properly secured to secure young children.
Fire apparatus dealers and members of the University of New Haven’s Fire Science Club presented product and program information. Members of the UNH club also showed adults and children how to use a fire extinguisher.
Jennifer A. Amendola, director of the 911 communications center at police headquarters, briefed people on the West Haven emergency reporting system by showing illustrations of the ERS structure and images of a 911 workstation .
Amendola and ERS dispatchers broadcast a real 911 call for people to hear and showed them how to text 911 if they couldn’t call in an emergency.
Dispatcher John Morris showed town residents Jaedon Lucas, 10, and his sister, Lyla, 6, how to call 911 during an exercise in which Morris called the 911 center so that the brothers and sisters can speak with the caller and listen to questions.
Members of the city’s health department administered Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine to people 18 years of age and older, including first and second doses and boosters, and posted information about the coronavirus, food hygiene and influenza.
Emergency Management Director Joseph Soto presented information on the West Haven Community Emergency Response Team, storm preparedness, storm recovery, and natural and man-made disasters.
Soto said the CERT program, which needs volunteers, educates volunteers on disaster preparedness for hazards that could impact their area and trains them in basic disaster response skills, such as fire safety, light search and rescue, crew organization and disaster medical operations.
Soto also registered residents with the city’s emergency notification system to receive alerts. Register here.
The citizen notification system enables the city to quickly provide residents with critical information in various situations, such as extreme weather conditions, unexpected road closures, missing persons, and evacuations from buildings or neighborhoods, Soto said. .
The system is operated in partnership with Everbridge Inc. of Burlington, Massachusetts, the world leader in incident notification systems.
Once registered in Everbridge’s secure database, the site will send subscribers urgent messages via mobile, personal or business phones or by email or SMS. Notifications are disseminated through the West Haven Emergency Operations Center.
The exhibit joined a long list of special events observing the secession of West Haven from Orange a century ago, including the Centennial Boat Parade in June, the Centennial Savin Rock Festival in July, the Centennial Fireworks and the exhibit âHubbard Farmsâ in September, and âA Tribute to Veterans of the Past 100 Years,â an exhibit at the West Haven Veterans Museum on Sunday. The rural and residential sections of Orange split in 1921 when the residential section, West Haven, became the youngest city in the state.
In the spirit of West Haven’s anniversary, Sabo sold signed copies of the new centennial book, “City of West Haven: Village to Town”, as well as centennial coins, lapel pins and WestHavenOpoly, the centennial version. of the Monopoly board game.
All proceeds from the books and merchandise generated by the committee will offset the expense and support the city council-approved centennial budget of $ 50,000, said Sabo, the city’s human resources commissioner.
For other centennial merchandise, visit the official online store here.
The store, hosted by West Haven vendor West Shore Associates, sells century-old branded merchandise such as long and short sleeve t-shirts, hoodies, stainless steel tumblers, wine glasses without foot, insulated drink bottles, ceramic mugs, retro sunglasses, canvas and cotton tote bags, eco-performance masks and pigment dyed twill and mesh trucker caps.
A portion of the proceeds from the seller’s merchandise will support the centennial account, Sabo said.
For a full list of centennial events, check out the schedule here.