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Fire

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Photo from Jeff Bressler

The Smithtown Fire Department is in the final stages of having its historic 1935 Mack Ladder Truck fully restored. A Department Restoration Committee has been given the task of having this piece of Long Island history returned to its former glory.

The restoration is not using Fire Department funds or taxpayer dollars for the project. The entire restoration is being funded by the generosity of Smithtown Fire Department members and the general community.

For the second consecutive year the Restoration Committee will host a chicken barbecue at 5 p.m. on Aug. 1, featuring the sounds of South Bound, a popular Long Island country band. Entry is $25 in advance or $30 on the day of the event.

Last year’s event was enthusiastically received with hundreds of music lovers in attendance to enjoy a complete BBQ chicken dinner, hamburgers, hot dogs, soda, beer and wine. The event is held on the scenic Nissequogue River at the department’s River Property, located behind 419 West Main St., Smithtown.

File photo

A toxic one-gallon bottle of sodium hydrochlorite spilled in a FedEx car in Huntington village on Wednesday, impairing the driver’s ability to breathe.

At 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, the Huntington Fire Department received a call from the Suffolk County Police Department regarding a hazardous materials incident on Green Street, according to Huntington Fire Department Chief Robert Berry. The department responded to the scene along with the Town of Islip HAZMAT TEAM. The team was able to secure the material.

The Fedex truck was carrying four one-gallon bottles of sodium hydrochlorite, an additive used in cleaning supplies, when one of the bottles opened and leaked in the truck.

The driver was transported to Huntington Hospital, Berry said, after having difficulty breathing.

FedEx didn’t immediately return calls seeking comment this week.

Incident shut down part of Main Street on Friday afternoon

Firefighters exit Renarts, where there was a heavy smoke condition on the second floor on Friday afternoon. Photo by Rohma Abbas

The Huntington Fire Department responded to a call of heavy smoke at Renarts that shut down a part of Main Street on Friday afternoon.

An employee of the shoe store near Wall Street called the fire department at about 12:45 p.m. after going upstairs to grab a pair of shoes for a customer and discovering smoke on the second floor. There was a little bit of smoke in the first room and a lot of smoke in the second room, he recalled at the scene on Friday.

“I was coughing a lot,” Paul Rodriguez said. “I couldn’t even stand up for a minute.”

He ran down to place the call to the fire department, which responded in five minutes, he said. The chief got to the scene in less than two minutes.

Rodriguez said fire officials told him there was an “electrical problem” that was being handled.

Chief Robert Berry told reporters at the scene there was no fire, but a “heavy smoke condition” on the second floor. Officials are still investigating what caused the smoke condition but by about 2 p.m., it was safe to go back into the store.

There were no injuries.

Firefighters douse a blaze that overtook a two-story office building on New York Avenue in Huntington village on Tuesday. Photo from Huntington Fire Department

Huntington Town firefighters doused a blaze in the village that ravaged a two-story office building on Tuesday night.

Firefighters douse a blaze that overtook a two-story office building on New York Avenue in Huntington village on Tuesday. Photo from Huntington Fire Department
Firefighters douse a blaze that overtook a two-story office building on New York Avenue in Huntington village on Tuesday. Photo from Huntington Fire Department

The fire broke out at 191 New York Ave. at about 7:45 p.m., according to Steve Silverman, a spokesman for the Town of Huntington Fire Chiefs Council.

The building near Prime Avenue, called the Huntington Law Center, housed a number of law practices, including the Ten Haagen Financial Group and prominent local lawyers Jim Matthews, Jim Gaughran and John Leo.

The Huntington Fire Department responded to the call. The Centerport, Halesite and Huntington Manor fire departments assisted at the scene. The Cold Spring Harbor and Greenlawn fire departments provided standby coverage.

Huntington Fire Department Chief Robert Berry said about 65 local firefighters showed up to douse the blaze. Firefighters didn’t leave the scene until 10:30 p.m., he said.

The cause of the fire was unclear, but the heaviest part of the blaze was in the rear of the building, Berry said in a Wednesday phone interview. There was no damage to adjacent buildings.

“The whole second floor is destroyed and the first floor had severe water and smoke damage,” Berry said.

The town has placarded the building, meaning it is uninhabitable, according to town spokesman A.J. Carter. There is “major structural damage to the roof,” he said.

Local firefighters douse a house fire on East Neck Road in Halesite on May 16. Photo by Steve Silverman

About 50 firefighters doused a blaze at a Halesite home on Saturday morning. There were no injuries.

Local firefighters douse a house fire on East Neck Road in Halesite on May 16. Photo by Steve Silverman
Local firefighters douse a house fire on East Neck Road in Halesite on May 16. Photo by Steve Silverman

Under the command of Halesite Fire Department Chief Dan McConnell, firefighters from Huntington, Centerport and Cold Spring Harbor fire departments responded to the scene on East Neck Road. Volunteers from the Halesite Fire Department responded to reports of a house fire at about 10 a.m., according to Steve Silverman, a spokesman for the Town of Huntington Fire Chiefs Council.

The firefighters began an aggressive interior attack through the front door and up a spiral staircase to the second floor. They were able to confine the fire to the attic and rear of the home. The remainder of the home sustained smoke and water damage, Silverman said.

The Halesite Fire Department was on the scene with two engines, a ladder truck and ambulance. Huntington Manor Fire Department was on standby at Halesite’s fire department.

Firefighters had the blaze under control in just over an hour, Silverman said.

The Suffolk County Police Arson Squad and the Huntington Town fire marshal are investigating the case.

Couple and young twins uninjured

Firefighters spray water to put out a blaze that engulfed a Cordell Place home in East Northport early Sunday morning. Photo by Steve Silverman
Firefighters work hard to put out a blaze that engulfed a Cordell Place home in East Northport early Sunday morning. Photo by Steve Silverman
Firefighters work hard to put out a blaze that engulfed a Cordell Place home in East Northport early Sunday morning. Photo by Steve Silverman

An East Northport couple and their four-month old boy-and-girl twins escaped unharmed after their home went up in flames on Sunday morning.

The East Northport Fire Department responded to the Cordell Place blaze on Mother’s Day at about 10 a.m. and found the attached garage of a single-family home engulfed in flames, according to a press release from Steve Silverman, public information officer for the Town of Huntington Fire Chiefs Council.

Three propane tanks outside the garage ignited and fueled the fire that spread to the kitchen and living room.

Firefighters check the roof of a Cordell Place home in East Northport early Sunday morning after a fire destroyed the garage and living room. Photo by Steve Silverman
Firefighters check the roof of a Cordell Place home in East Northport early Sunday morning after a fire destroyed the garage and living room. Photo by Steve Silverman

More than 50 firefighters from East Northport, Commack and Kings Park fire departments and seven trucks worked to get the fire under control within 20 minutes, led by East Northport Chief Wayne Kaifler Jr. and First Assistant Chief Dan Heffernan. The East Northport Rescue Squad had three ambulances and paramedic unit on the scene for EMS support.

The garage, living room and kitchen were destroyed. and the rest of the home sustained smoke damage.

The Suffolk County Police Arson Squad and Huntington Town fire marshal are investigating the fire, according to the press release.

Centereach Fire Department file photo

Two police officers and a neighbor saved a woman from a raging house fire early Sunday morning that killed a family dog.

The Suffolk County Police Department said the officers, Frank Saracino and Keith Murphy, responded to a 911 call reporting the fire on Forest Road in Centereach at about 3:15 a.m. to find a house fully engulfed and a woman trapped on the second floor.

Police said Saracino, Murphy and a neighbor from across the street, 43-year-old Thomas Earl, located three ladders and together climbed to the second-floor window and carried the woman down the ladder to safety.

The rescued woman, 66-year-old Rosemarie Donnelly, and Earl were treated for back injuries at Stony Brook University Hospital.

Of the house’s four other occupants, who all escaped the flames on their own, James Donnelly, 72, Rosemarie’s husband, was treated at SBUH for lacerations to his hand and leg; and grandson Justin Donnelly, 26, was treated there for smoke inhalation. The two others, police said, reported having difficulty breathing but refused treatment.

Police said Centereach Fire Department personnel rescued two of the family’s pets, a cat and a dog, but another dog died in the fire.

Detectives from the SCPD’s Arson Section are investigating the fire’s cause, as is the Brookhaven Town fire marshal.

Above, Selden Fire Department officials pull off a tricky extrication. Photo from Selden Fire Department

The Selden Fire Department recently extricated a driver from a car that was unsafe after it crashed off the road.

At about 8:55 a.m. on April 26, the fire department responded to a call of a motor vehicle accident, according to a statement from the department. Officials found an older model Dodge Durango off the road at Suffolk County Road 83, at the off-ramp to South Bicycle Path.

It was an elaborate operation, due to the position and angle of the vehicle, according to the department.

Firefighters used specialized equipment to secure the Durango before removing the driver.

“This incident demonstrates some of the many techniques and tools that our first responders are proficient with,” Selden Fire Chief Michael Matteo Jr.  said in a statement. “Selden firefighters followed all proper procedures and protocols, and successfully handled a potentially unstable vehicle, ensuring that no further harm came to the occupants.”

The driver was transported with minor injuries to John T. Mather Memorial Hospital. All Selden units cleared the scene by approximately 9:45 a.m.

The cause of the accident is still under investigation.

Suffolk County police car. File photo

Police say a man shot himself on Tuesday afternoon and his Coram house was intentionally set on fire.

According to the Suffolk County Police Department, a passerby found the man slumped over in his vehicle at Tanglewood Park on Howe Road in Coram and called police to the scene shortly after 5 p.m. Homicide Squad detectives found the deceased man, 67, had a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Investigation revealed the victim resided at a house that had been set on fire earlier in the day, police said.

Officers had been called to a home on Hartsdale Lane around 3:30 p.m. to what was then an active house fire. The home was not occupied at the time of the incident, police said, and no one was hurt. Arson Squad detectives believe the fire was intentional.

The respective squads are investigating the two separate incidents.