Wednesday, September 21, 1938 The Great New England Hurricane of 1938
Centerville - Looking north on Whitney Avenue, just north of School Street - CLICK ON THE PHOTO
One of the most significant weather events to impact Hamden in the 20th century was the Great New England Hurricane of 1938, which occurred 80 years ago this week. Hundreds of trees were downed and electric and telephone service in some areas was interrupted for days, even weeks. In all, the hurricane took 682 lives, mostly in Rhode Island and Massachusetts.
In all, over 682 lives were lost, mostly in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. According to author Leslie H. Tyler, who published "The New England Hurricane" (1938), "The wind velocity was officially recorded at 186 miles per hour at the Harvard Meteorological Observatory at Blue Hill . . . on the edge of the storm." CLICK ON THE PHOTO ABOVE FOR MORE PHOTOS.
This article has been edited and reposted in the new website for the Hamden Historical Society. Check it out:
At 0948 hours on Wednesday, September 19th, Engine 3 and Rescue 2 were dispatched to the Connecticut Transit Depot located at 2061 State Street for what was described as a sick employee in the rear of the depot.
The patient reported becoming ill while moving a bus and noticing a “white substance” on the dashboard of the vehicle. The patient was transported to YNHH via AMR.
Investigation with CT Transit managers revealed that the former operator of the bus claimed to have used a powdered cleaning product to clean the bus following the shift. This was unable to be confirmed on site with no product container available.
As a precautionary measure CT DEP was notified and requested to test the isolated substance to confirm that it was not hazardous. By protocol all necessary law enforcement agencies were notified, including the Hamden Police Department, who remained on-scene for the duration of the call.
CT Transit Officials cooperated fully and produced all material safety data sheets to Incident Command. No additional employees were exposed.
A DEP Official responded to the scene with specialized equipment to test the substance, which was confirmed to match the composition of the cleaning product “AJAX”. The bus was released to CT Transit and the scene cleared at (1204).
This incident emphasized the effective interagency communication and cooperation necessary to manage calls of this type.
The website thanks the Fire Chief's Office and Dep. Chief Gary Merwede for providing this article.
Last week retired Dep. Chief Clark Hurlburt wrote to the website about marching with other members of the department in the Honor Guard for the FDNY 9/11 Memorial at Madison Square Garden in October 2002.
Then a company officer, Hurlburt recalled being with Batt. Chiefs Bill Coppola, and Paul Wetmore Jr., then-Capt. Don LaBanca and Firefighter Rob Madigosky, but could not recall the others. Earlier this week we received an email from retired Fire Marshal Dennis Harrison, who wrote that he was also among the Hamden guys who traveled to NYC that day.
"We were outside the New York Public library. I was talking to an LA County Christian Firefighter group when a FDNY captain came up to me and asked me how many guys were with me I said about a dozen. He said, 'get them and meet me in the Felt Forum, we need guys to hold the flags around the garden - one for each firefighter that had passed during and after 9/11.' That is how we ended up in the Honor Guard that day."
Unfortunately, Harrison could not recall any others. But when the service was over, they went to a TGIF's restaurant next to Grand Central. "I think there were four of us," wrote Harrison, "we allhad burgers and a beer and the bill was 100+ dollars. Bill Coppola was appalled. LOL NYC prices. 😝"
Clark Hurlburt paid a visit to the website late this past week and donated the above program to the HFRA archbives. Thank you, Clark! HFD's presence and participation in that important FDNY event is something, like 9/11, should always be remembered.