07/01/13 11:13am

RACHEL YOUNG PHOTO | A LIPA worker cuts the line at a house fire on Delmar Drive in laurel Monday morning.

One day after moving into a house they were renting on Delmar Drive in Laurel, a family was forced to evacuate when an electrical fire sparked.

The fire broke out at about 10:30 a.m. Monday, as a Cablevision worker was installing service to the house, officials said.

“Someone was working on the house, they hit a wire and that’s what started it,” said Cutchogue fire chief Tony Berkoski.

Conditions in the burning house were challenging, the chief said, with temperatures as high as 140 degrees.

LIPA arrived at the scene shortly before 11 a.m. to cut off power, as firefighters used an ax to break through the side of the house to extinguish the fire.

“We had a hard time because the house was built properly, it had double sheetrock on the walls and ceiling so it was hard to pull down,” Mr. Berkoski said. “That was the problem. Once the fire got into the ceiling it was hard to get down.”

Nobody inside the house was injured, but at least two different emergency workers were transported to Eastern Long Island Hospital for treatment of exertion.

The family renting the house declined comment.

The Cutchogue and Jamesport fire departments assisted the Mattituck Fire Department at the scene.

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06/25/13 4:53pm
06/25/2013 4:53 PM
STEVE ROSSIN PHOTO | Riverhead firefighters put out a fire on the roof of Cliff's Rezdezvous in Riverhead.

STEVE ROSSIN PHOTO | Riverhead firefighters put out a fire on the roof of Cliff’s Rendezvous in Riverhead.

The roof of a popular downtown restaurant was damaged Tuesday afternoon when a grease fire spread from the kitchen, Riverhead fire officials said.

One employee of the restaurant suffered a minor burn and was treated at the scene.

The fire broke out in a fan unit in the kitchen at Cliff’s Rendezvous on East Main Street shortly before 3 p.m., said Riverhead second assistant chief Kevin Brooks.

The fire then spread to the roof, charring a section near the chimney.

Riverhead firefighters quickly got to the scene with multiple fire engines and began fighting the blaze. Fire crews used ladders to get onto the roof of the restaurant to reach the fire.

Mr. Brooks said the injured employee had a minor burn to his hand, but refused further medical attention.

East Main Street was closed between Union and Maple avenues while fire crews put out the blaze.

By 3:30 p.m. the fire was under control.

Mr. Brooks said the fire “had the potential” to be worse had firefighters not responded as quickly. The Riverhead Fire Marshall was on scene to investigate the fire.

By 4 p.m., fire crews reopened the roads and were leaving the scene.

05/06/13 8:47am
05/06/2013 8:47 AM
JAMESPORT FIRE DEPARTMENT COURTESY PHOTO | A motorcycle burst into flames Friday, the second incident in a busy week for the volunteers.

JAMESPORT FIRE DEPARTMENT COURTESY PHOTO | A motorcycle burst into flames Friday, the second incident in a busy week for the volunteers.

The summer season is just a month away but the Jamesport Fire Department was already hard at work this week as three separate fires sparked across the district in just under a week, fire officials said.

Firefighters got the call of the first fire Wednesday about 2:35 p.m. for an outside fire on Tuthills Lane in Aquebogue. Fire crews arrived at the street to find a “large pile of hay bales” on fire, fire officials said. The fire had already spread to a nearby wooden fence that surrounded the hay bales, but firefighters used two fire engines to put out the flames and prevent the fire from spreading.

JAMESPORT FIRE DEPARTMENT COURTESY PHOTO | Firefighters extinguish a rekindled bonfire on Saturday.

JAMESPORT FIRE DEPARTMENT COURTESY PHOTO | Firefighters extinguish a rekindled bonfire on Saturday.

Two days later, Jamesport firefighters were called to the scene of a motorcycle accident at Sound Avenue and Herricks Lane in Jamesport, officials said. A motorcycle was lying in the middle of the road and had burst into flames.

Riverhead Town police said the driver of the 2011 Kawasaki motorcycle, a 19-year-old man from Cutchogue, lost control of the vehicle about 7:35 p.m. and dumped the motorcycle before it caught fire.

A fire engine arrived on scene and put out the fire while fire police and Riverhead police closed the road.

The teen was taken to Peconic Bay Medical Center for treatment of a hand injury, police said.

The next day on Saturday, Jamesport firefighters were called to a second outside fire on state park property adjacent to the Hallockville Museum Farm. Volunteers used two fire engines and an off-road vehicle to quickly extinguish the fire.

Fire officials said the fire “appeared to have been a large unattended bonfire which had rekindled.”

Jamesport Fire Chief Duffy Griffiths said residents should take extra precautions as the summer season approaches to conduct outside activities safely.

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04/14/13 5:06pm
04/14/2013 5:06 PM
PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | (R-L) Riverhead firefighters Skip Beale and Chris Schroer put out a mulch fire Sunday afternoon.

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | (R-L) Riverhead firefighters Norman “Skip” Beale and Chris Schroer put out a mulch fire Sunday afternoon.

A couple of mulch fires had Riverhead firefighters busy Sunday afternoon as two separate flowerbeds near a Route 58 parking lot caught fire.

The first mulch fire started about 1:25 p.m. in a mulch bed near the Hudson City Savings Bank parking lot. Firefighters got to the scene and mopped up the area before the fire could spread.

About 3:30 p.m., a second small mulch fire started in a flowerbed just across the road near the Best Buy parking lot. A Riverhead fire truck arrived minutes later and firefighters put out the smoldering mulch.

Mulch can be lit on fire accidentally by people, but can also ignite spontaneously depending on the right weather conditions, firefighters said.

Second assistant fire chief Kevin Brooks said the fire department must always be wary to put out the mulch fires when they’re small so they don’t spread.

“With wind like this, you can never be cautious enough,” he said.

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04/05/13 2:07pm
04/05/2013 2:07 PM

CYNDI MURRAY PHOTO | Riverhead firefighters extinguished a burning aircraft during a drill Thursday night at Gabreski Airport.

The Riverhead Fire Department trained to extinguish a burning aircraft at Gabreski Airport Thursday night. The three-hour drill was the first of its kind for the department, which has a mutual-aid agreement with the base.

Conducted by the 106th Air Rescue Wing, the drill prepares crews to control flames and rescue passengers in the event of a fiery airplane crash. Thirty Riverhead firefighters, joined by members of the Manorville Fire Department, took turns battling the fire, which was set to the mobile aircraft simulator using 750 gallons of propane. The simulator, provided by Kellogg Community College in Michigan, replicates a 50-foot fuselage with severe structural damage.

Over the past several days crews from Flanders, East Quogue, Quogue, Eastport, and Westhampton Beach participated in the drill. The simulator will now travel to Florida to continue training firefighters with similar drills across the nation.

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03/13/13 1:42pm
03/13/2013 1:42 PM
PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | An East Moriches firefighter walks towards the scene of a deadly house fire Wednesday morning.

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | An East Moriches firefighter walks towards the scene of a deadly house fire in Manorville Wednesday morning.

Riverhead firefighters helped put out a Manorville house fire after which one woman and a dog were found dead and a man was taken to an area hospital Wednesday morning, authorities said.

The Manorville Fire Department first received a call about 9:30 a.m. for a building on fire. The house, located at the end of a long driveway at 218 Eastport Manor Road, was in flames when firefighters arrived on the scene, said Suffolk County Fire Marshal Joe Kuethen.

Firefighters located a woman’s body inside the house during a search, he said. A dog was also found dead inside the home, police said.

A resident of the house, identified by police as 68-year-old Charles Woolsey was found outside the burning home, authorities said. Mr. Woolsey, who was unconcious, was taken to Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center in East Patchogue for treatment of smoke inhalation, police said.

An update on Mr. Woolsey’s condition was not available.

The house had a message written across its roof, according to a Newsday report. Officials declined to comment on the writing.

Riverhead fire officials got the request for aid about 10:15 a.m., and sent to the fire scene, said Riverhead first assistant chief Joseph Raynor. Riverhead firefighters helped to douse any remaining fires on the property.

Riverhead firefighters were released from the scene at 1:20 p.m.

Firefighters and ambulance volunteers from the Eastport, Center Moriches, Westhampton Beach, East Moriches, and Quogue Fire Departments were also called to the fire.

Suffolk County police are investigating the fire, and both homicide and arson squads arrived on scene later in the afternoon to investigate due to the fatality. Anyone with information about the fire is asked to call Suffolk County Homicide Squad detectives at (631) 852-6392.

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03/11/13 5:30pm
03/11/2013 5:30 PM
House fire in Aquebogue

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | The Meetinghouse Creek Road house was deemed unsafe and was slated to be knocked down after Monday afternoon’s fire.

A woman and her adult son escaped a house fire in Aquebogue unharmed Monday before the house on Meeting House Creek Road became “fully involved” with flames, emergency officials said.

Fire officials said the emergency call was received about 1:30 p.m., after a neighbor saw smoke coming out of a window.

“There’s heat, fire coming out of every opening,” Riverhead Fire Department press officer Bill Sanok said shortly after firefighters arrived on scene.

As of 3 p.m., the fire was out in most of the house but was still active in the attic, Mr. Sanok said.

Riverhead police Lt. David Lessard said the homeowner told police she had smelled “fuel oil” earlier in the day and was inside the house with her son when the fire broke out. The two ran off the property as smoke engulfed the home and watched on through the afternoon as firefighters battled the blaze.

An employee of the nearby Lighthouse Marina said he saw the smoke and then heard a woman screaming. She then emerged from the house yelling for her pets, he said.

“It just got worse and worse,” the man said of the fire.

Lt. Lessard said an initial investigation found there were 19 domestic cats living in the home.

One Riverhead police officer who arrived on the scene, Charlie Silleck, was able to break a basement window and free one of the cats that was loose, Lt. Lessard said. The fate of the other cats is unknown, he said.

Jamesport Fire Department’s Rapid Intervention team also responded to the scene to assist.

Highway superintendent George “Gio” Woodson arrived on scene with heavy equipment about 3:15 p.m. to knock down the building, which was deemed unsafe. Firefighters were still on the scene of the fire at 5 p.m.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation by the Riverhead Fire Marshals, Lt. Lessard said.

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