We have taken a severe hit from this massive storm and due to the damages communication has been slow.
We will be setting up a command post in the Islip Town Hall tomorrow where we will be able to relay better communication when it becomes available.
The beach is impassable. I managed to get to the beach yesterday and the damage from the storm is widespread and overwhelming to say the least.
I appreciate that everyone is concerned about their homes and the state of the town. At this time we are still assessing the extent of damage. For that reason, we are asking people to please be patient. We will get information out as soon as it becomes available.
Currently the island is, above all, unsafe. We are lucky that no one has been hurt and everyone is safe. Let’s try to keep it that way.
The inland route “aka Burma Road” which is the main truck route for utility vehicles is also impassable due to massive amounts of debris.
For this reason, reaching Ocean Beach and the process of restoration will surely be a slow and formidable process.
I met October 30 with Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, Islip Town Supervisor, Tom Croci, and Fire Island National Seashore superintendent Chris Soller. They assured me that Fire Island and Ocean Beach are the utmost concern. However, due to the severe damage that Suffolk County has endured, the daunting task of restoring utilities and rebuilding the infrastructure of Long Island is their first order of business. Because our winter population is small, their priorities lie with the greater population of Long Island.
Bottom line, the rebuilding and reoccupation of Ocean Beach and all of Fire Island will be a slow undertaking. I am doing my best to impress the severity of our situation to the higher-ups. Ocean Beach is not just a resort town; for some it is the only home we have.
The bridges are closed to traffic, there has been severe damage to the Ocean Beach ferry basin and all docks and marinas.
The Fire Island Coast Guard and Suffolk County Marine requested that people refrain from any attempt to return until after the island has been fully assessed to being safe for occupation.
I will do my best to keep everyone informed.
Best, Jim Mallott
10/31/12 10 AM
Hauppague, Long Island
Seaview has a nice series of reports at: http://seaviewfireisland.com/
Some great pictures of Fair Harbor, including a home interior, with a few Saltaire images
thanx for this link, Justin
NEWS FROM FAIR HARBOR
UPDATE FROM FHFD
November 2nd, 2012 As all of you know, hurricane Sandy has dealt the Island and our communities a severe blow. Our Fire Chiefs were brought onto the island by boat on Tuesday to do an initial assessment of the damage. Beginning Wednesday, a dedicated crew from our all-volunteer Fire Department has responded to the Island and worked incredibly hard in service to the 3 communities we serve. The following report is from Chief Cherveny:
Hurricane Sandy pushed water across the entirety of Fair Harbor, Dunewood and Lonelyville. The ocean front bore the brunt of the storm with the beach and dune being eroded away for the most part. Most of the oceanfront homes are intact with varying levels of damage from lost ocean side decks to broken windows and doors. Also a tremendous amount of sand has accumulated on the walks and around homes. Several walks have been undermined or lifted up by the surge. The flooding and high winds also knocked down many trees. While there remains no water or power, the overhead power lines are generally in good shape and are currently being assessed by LIPA.
The Fair Harbor Fire Department has been on scene since Tuesday. The Chiefs were brought on the beach by boat on Tues afternoon to assess the community and coordinate cleanup operations. On Wednesday, a large number of our volunteer members were allowed onto the Island as a team to continue assessing damage and to begin the process of cleaning up our communities and reestablishing emergency response operations. All trees and debris that were impeding emergency vehicle access have been cleared. We have brought some vehicles back on the beach and are cleaning-up the Ambulance Bay, which we are currently operating out of due to the Firehouse renovation.
Access to the Island remains restricted to emergency personnel only. Conditions remain quite dangerous with fire being a particular hazard. Wednesday morning we responded to a fully involved house fire in Ocean Beach. Also, our ability to respond to emergencies is restricted to daylight hours at this time. We are aware that people are anxious to get out to the Island to check on their houses for themselves. However, people should be aware that this an evolving situation that currently remains hazardous. We are in constant communication with the town of Islip, Suffolk County and our neighboring Fire Departments. Over the coming days, we will continue our assessment and cleanup, and we will keep you informed to the best of our ability.
Richard Scott Cherveny
Please understand that it is not possible for Fire Department members to visit everyone’s homes and report in on their condition and take photos, etc. as many people have asked them to do. Their focus is to bring back a safe environment for emergency personnel, to clear the roads and walkways and to reestablish emergency response protocols and operations.
Please keep our dedicated team of volunteer first responders in your thoughts as they continue to work tirelessly on our collective behalf to restore our communities to a safe environment that we can return to when the restrictions are lifted.
The Fair Harbor Fire District
Brett Roberts , Larry Goldstein, Kate Skelly Kurka, Julie Lokin, Heather McDonald