Wednesday, August 02, 2006
A visitor to Westport’s Sherwood Island State Park cools off today with some late afternoon fishing. The temperature along the shore approached 100 during the day. That’s the Met Life blimp in the sky over Compo Beach. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo
No one was injured in a truck fire on the exit 18 off ramp on I-95 southbound in Westport today. Firefighters quickly extinguished the flames in the Four Seasons Landscaping truck. There were no injuries. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Westport Fire Department photo
Due to the heat, tonight’s Westport Levitt Pavilion children’s show has been moved indoors.
The Geist, Visual Comedian show will be held at Saugatuck Elementary School on Riverside Avenue.
The event starts at 7 p.m.
Westport is not among the communities that failed to send ballots to voters living in other countries or currently serving in the military.
The U.S. Department of Justice filed suit against several communities that did not follow the proper procedures for the ballots, but reached an agreement to ensure all would be able to participate in the Aug. 8 Democratic primary.
The agreement allows those who did not receive a ballot to go online to download one and grants extra time for those ballots to be returned.
Westport Town Clerk Patricia Strauss, however, said she mailed out all the ballots overseas last month.
Temperature records were falling throughout the region today as the heat climbed to over 100 degrees, including at 105 degrees in downtown Westport. A record of 101 degrees was set at LaGuardia Airport earlier today. The record for Sikorsky Airport in Stratford was 96 degrees. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
With temperatures expect to climb close to 100 degrees again today, Fire Chief Christopher Ackley is urging Westporters to notify town emergency workers of those who may need assistance.
Adderessing Tuesday night’s Representative Town Meeting session, Ackley said residents should contact the Westport Weston Health District or the Mid-Fairfield County Chapter of the American Red Cross if they know people who may have health issues due to the heat.
“If you know people who may need help, let us know so we can avoid potential problems,” he said.
About a dozen Westport customers were without power late Tuesday. Ackley said during the day Tuesday there had been a number of emergency calls of wires down.
10:30 a.m. – Town Hall Room 102 – International Hospitality Committee
1:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Planning & Zoning Commission Excavation & Fill Regulations Committee
4:30 p.m. – Town Hall Room 201A – Planning & Zoning Commission/Beautification Committee
7 p.m. - Levitt Pavilion - Geist, Visual Comedian
The Westport Representative Town Meeting tonight approved funding for a new boiler at Coleytown Elementary School and firefighter overtime.
Members approved $350,000 for the boiler and $76,715 for overtime. Both items drew few comments before unanimous approval.
Schools Superintendent Elliott Landon said the Coleytown boiler was 54 years old, and school officials have wanted to replace it for some time.
“It’s been functional through a lot of work,” he said. “It has been put off because other major projects were given a higher priority.”
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
A Westport firefighter is among those from Connecticut who are in Oregon helping fight forest fires.
Mike Kronick was among the 20 firefighters assembled by the state Department of Environmental Protection that left last Thursday. He’ll be out west for two weeks.
Fire Chief Christopher Ackley said initially the firefighters were under the impression they were going to San Diego to fight a fire there, but they were sent to Oregon.
Lightning had sparked the fires in Oregon, including in Ochoco National Forest. Ackley said Kronick is on the forest side of the fire, which has crept close to a number of buildings.
Westport’s Center for Senior Activities stayed open later than usual today to accommodate residents seeking relief from the heat.
Temperatures in the area soared into the mid-90s during the afternoon with the heat index hitting 111, according to the weather station at Bedford Middle School.
“The air-conditioned Senior Center is an ideal place to cool off not just for seniors but for anyone in Westport seeking respite from the heat,” said First Selectman Gordon Joseloff.
Sue Pfister, Senior Center coordinator, said seven or eight residents had taken advantage of the Senior Center’s cool hospitality by late afternoon.
The Connecticut Department of Public Utility Control (DPUC) today joined with ISO New England, the operator of the region’s electric grid, in calling for voluntary energy conservation because of the heat wave.
In a statement, the DPUC urged all Connecticut homes and businesses to conserve energy especially in the critical period from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m.
“The department notes that this request is presently voluntary in hopes that mandatory action will not be needed,” the statement said.
The department recommended citizens to:
The National Weather Service has issued a severe thunderstorm watch for Westport and the tri-state area until 9 p.m. today.
An afternoon advisory said hail to 1 inch in diameter, thunderstorm wind gusts to 70 miles per hour and dangerous lightning are possible in the area.
A severe thunderstorm watch means conditions are favorable for severe thunderstorms in and close to the watch area.
Persons in the area should be on the lookout for threatening weather conditions and listen for later statements and possible warnings, the advisory said. Severe thunderstorms can and occasionally do produce tornadoes.
A bank sign registers an unofficial 101 degrees at mid-day today in Westport’s center. Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.comGov. M. Jodi Rell announced that Westport’s Sherwood Island State Park as well as all other state parks and beaches will be open free of charge today and Wednesday to help people beat the heat.
“A great way to stay cool and healthy during the heat wave is to wade into Long Island Sound at one of our four state beaches, or take a refreshing dip at a beautiful inland state park,” Rell said in a statement.
“This is an especially good option for families with young children. To make it easier for everyone, I am directing the Department of Environmental Protection to suspend admission fees at all state beaches and parks today and Wednesday.”
The other state beaches on Long Island Sound in addition to Sherwood Island State Park are Rocky Neck in East Lyme, Hammonasset in Madison, and Silver Sands in Milford.
The house at 6 Windrush Lane was demolished this morning. The 1923 house sold last month for $962,500. It was the WestportNow Teardown of the Day on May 18. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com
The waves on Long Island Sound crash against two chairs left unattended at Westport’s Compo Beach on Monday afternoon. While it heated up into the 90s there was a cool sea breeze along the beach. Temperatures are expected to heat up close to 100 today and Wednesday, and the National Weather Service has issued a heat warning. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Larry Untermeyer for WestportNow.com
9 a.m. – Westport Fire Headquarters – Public Site & Building Commission Levitt Pavilion Committee
10 a.m. – Town Hall Room 201 – Administrative Review Committee
7 p.m. – Town Hall Room 309 – Shellfish Commission
8 p.m. – Town Hall Auditorium - Representative Town Meeting (live coverage cable channel 79)
8 p.m. - Levitt Pavilion - Gary Nichols & the Ballistic Bovine Boys
The Westport Youth Commission kicked off its summer movie series tonight at the Levitt Pavilion with “Anchorman” starring Will Ferrell. The Aug. 7 movie will be “Jurassic Park,” and the Aug. 14 showing will be “Robin Hood: Men in Tights.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo