Wednesday, May 29, 2024

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Firefighters Make Quick Work of Bedroom Fire

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Westport firefighters tonight quickly knocked down a second floor bedroom fire at 11 Guyer Road. Damage was contained to the bedroom, but a smoke condition occurred throughout the house. The occupants, who had just returned from being away, were alerted by a smoke alarm and evacuated without incident after the 6:34 p.m. alarm. The Fire Marshal’s Office was investigating the cause of the blaze. Quick thinking by the homeowner to close the bedroom door prior to leaving the house kept the fire confined to one room, said Assistant Chief Larry Conklin. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) WestportNow.com photo

‘Dr. K’ Opens WestportREADS Event on ‘Dubliners’

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There was a full house at the Westport Library today for the opening event of the library’s month-long WestportREADS program this year featuring James Joyce’s “Dubliners.” Veteran Staples High School English teacher Gerry Kuroghlian, known to legions of students as “Dr. K,” provided history, background and insight into the characters, the stories and the city of Dublin. “There is lots of humor in the book even though some of the themes are dark,” he said. “My wife is Irish, and I have found that you can’t be Irish without having a sense of humor.” (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

SRO Crowd for ‘Dubliners’ Talk

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There was a standing room only crowd today for a talk by retired Staples High School English teacher Gerry Kurgholian on James Joyce’s “Dubliners,” this year’s WestportREADS selection. He singled out “The Dead” as one of his favorite stories in the book. “If you only read one story, read ‘The Dead,’” he said, adding, “Be sure to see the movie on Jan. 17 at Christ and Holy Church at 4 p.m. I loved that movie.”  (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Phyllis Groner for WestportNow.com

Weather Service: Caution Due to Areas of Dense Fog

In a special statement, the National Weather service warned today that areas of fog will be locally dense.

Areas of fog are across Nassau and Suffolk counties on Long Island, Westchester, and Putnam counties in New York as well as southwest Connecticut, it said.

Visibilities of 1 mile or less can be expected in much of the fog with some spots having visibilities of a quarter mile or less within dense fog.

Motorists when encountering these conditions should slow down and use low beam headlights as well as allow for extra space between vehicles, the Weather Service said.

Talking Transportation: The Myth of the Third Rail

By Jim Cameron

Special to WestportNow

Metro-North’s mangled and much-maligned service in Connecticut is made all the more challenging by a technological quirk of fate. Ours is the only U.S. commuter railroad that operates on three modes of power—AC, DC and diesel.

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On a typical run from, say, New Haven to Grand Central, the first part of the journey is done “under the wire,” the trains being powered by 13,000-volt AC overhead wires, or catenaries. 

Around Pelham, in Westchester County, the conversion is made to 660-volt DC third rail power for the rest of the trip into New York. Even diesel trains must convert to third rail as their smoky exhaust is banned in the Park Avenue tunnels.

And there’s the rub: Connecticut trains need both AC and DC, overhead and third rail, power pick-ups and processors. That means a lot more electronics, and added cost, for each car. While the DC-only new M7 cars running in Westchester cost about $2 million each, our new dual-mode M8 car designed for Connecticut cost $2.5 million each.