Jan 262015

Screen Shot 2015-01-26 at 12.24.01 AMOrange Emergency Management Director Fred Palmer passed along these Red Cross Safety Tips:

❏ Dress in several layers of lightweight clothing, wear mittens and a hat (preferably one that covers your ears).

❏ Wear waterproof, insulated boots to keep your feet warm and dry and to maintain your footing in ice and snow.

❏ Minimize travel. If travel is necessary, keep a disaster supplies kit in your vehicle.

❏ Listen to a NOAA Weather Radio or other local news channels for critical information from the National Weather Service (NWS) 

❏ Winterize your vehicle and keep the gas tank full. A full tank will keep the fuel line from freezing.

❏ Insulate your home by installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic from the inside to keep cold air out.

❏ Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected every year.

❏ Bring pets/companion animals inside during winter weather. Move other animals or livestock to sheltered areas with non-frozen drinking water.

❏ Running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing.

❏ All fuel-burning equipment should be vented to the outside and kept clear.

Cold-Related Emergencies 

Frostbite and hypothermia are two dangerous and potentially life-threatening emergencies. Learn how to care for these emergencies by taking a first aid class.

❏ Go to a designated public shelter if your home loses power or heat during periods of extreme cold.

❏ Avoid driving when conditions include sleet, freezing rain or drizzle, snow or dense fog.

❏ Before tackling strenuous tasks in cold temperatures, consider your physical condition, the weather factors and the nature of the task.

❏ Protect yourself from frostbite and hypothermia by wearing warm, loose-fitting, lightweight clothing in several layers. Stay indoors, if possible.

❏ Help people who require special assistance such as elderly people living alone, people with disabilities and children.

❏ Check on your animals and make sure that their access to food and water is not blocked by snow drifts, ice or other obstacles. If possible, bring them indoors.

Caution: Carbon Monoxide Kills 

❏ Never use a generator, grill, camp stove or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices inside a home, garage, basement, crawlspace or any partially enclosed area. Locate unit away from doors, windows and vents that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors.

❏ The primary hazards to avoid when using alternate sources for electricity, heating or cooking are carbon monoxide poisoning, electric shock and fire.

❏ Install carbon monoxide alarms in central locations on every level of your home and outside sleeping areas to provide early warning of accumulating carbon monoxide.

❏ If the carbon monoxide alarm sounds, move quickly to a fresh air location outdoors or by an open window or door.

❏ Call for help from the fresh air location and remain there until emergency personnel arrive to assist you. Let Your Family Know You’re Safe If your community experiences a severe winter storm, or any disaster, register on the American Red Cross Safe and Well Web site available through RedCross.org to let your family and friends know about your welfare. If you don’t have Internet access, call 1-866-GET-INFO to register yourself and your family.

Be RedCrossReady Winter Storm Safety Checklist

What should I do? What supplies do I need? What do I do after a storm? Winter storms can range from a moderate snow over a few hours to a blizzard with blinding, wind driven snow that lasts for several days.

Some winter storms are large enough to affect several states, while others affect only a single community. Many winter storms are accompanied by dangerously low temperatures and sometimes by strong winds, icing, sleet and freezing rain.

For more information on disaster and emergency preparedness, visit RedCross.org

Winter Storm Watch Winter storm conditions are possible within the next 36 to 48 hours. People in a watch area should review their winter storm plans and stay informed about weather conditions. Winter Storm Warning Life-threatening, severe winter conditions have begun or will begin within 24 hours. People in a warning area should take precautions immediately.

❏ Water—at least a 3-day supply; one gallon per person per day

❏ Food—at least a 3-day supply of nonperishable, easy-to-prepare food

❏ Flashlight

❏ Battery-powered or hand-crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)

❏ Extra batteries

❏ First aid kit

❏ Medications (7-day supply) and medical items (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, cane)

❏ Multi-purpose tool

❏ Sanitation and personal hygiene items

❏ Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)

❏ Cell phone with chargers

❏ Family and emergency contact information

❏ Extra cash

❏ Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)

❏ Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)

❏ Tools/supplies for securing your home

❏ Sand, rock salt or non-clumping kitty litter to make walkways and steps less slippery

❏ Warm coats, gloves or mittens, hats, boots and extra blankets and warm clothing for all household members

❏ Ample alternate heating methods such as fireplaces or wood- or coal-burning stoves.

Jan 252015

Screen shot 2013-11-25 at 6.24.19 PMFeel the chill in the air? Winter is here, so it’s time to adopt a fire hydrant.

In the event of an emergency, the Orange Volunteer Fire Department will need to access all local fire hydrants for water.

But if they are covered in snow, the firefighters would have to clear it themselves, taking up valuable time and possibly cause a delay in putting out a fire — no one wants that to happen.

Some town residents already have signed up for the “Adopt A Hydrant” program at the Orange Country Fair and the Firemen’s Carnival. Other residents just automatically take it upon themselves to clear around fire hydrants near their homes and the fire department greatly appreciates it.

The Orange Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) is asking residents interested in adopting a fire hydrant and helping out the town and fire department to please e-mail CERT member Lisa Hartshorn at [email protected] with your name, address, fire hydrant number (if applicable), location of hydrant and e-mail address so she can add you to the directory of volunteers.

Screen shot 2013-11-25 at 6.36.17 PM


Originally Published on: Jan 4, 2015 @ 18:44

Jan 252015

Orange Snow Plows stood at the ready Tuesday afternoon in anticipation of storm Derby.

Orange Snow Plows stood at the ready last year in anticipation of storm Derby.

There are more than 110 miles of streets in the Town of Orange. Snow removal can cost up to $2,500.00 per hour. Therefore, it is important for the Department of Public Works to use its resources wisely with cooperation from the residents to minimize the cost.

Plow Routes:   The streets are plowed and sanded in order of priority. Main (collector) roads are addressed first with special attention to steep hills, and difficult intersections. Side streets are done next, then dead-end streets.  Side streets will remain unplowed if the main roads require repeat plowing due to heavy volume of snowfall. This may not seem fair to the residents of side streets or dead-ends.  However, the main roads must remain open.

Blocked Driveways:   All snow plows angle the same way; to the driver’s right. While plowing, the plow will push the snow in front of a residential driveway.  The homeowner is responsible for access to his/her driveway. The only way to avoid additional snow removal is to wait until DPW work crews have completed their final clean up of your road.

Mailbox Damage:   The town repairs or replaces only those mailboxes and/or posts that are actually struck by the plow blade.  Usually, a paint mark or tire tracks provide evidence of a mailbox strike.  The Town does not repair or replace mailboxes and/or posts that fall from the force of plowed snow. Mailboxes and supporting posts must be installed to withstand the rigors of snow removal; including the force of snow pushed from the street onto the roadside.  It is recommended that homeowners do not purchase and utilize plastic mailboxes and/or posts as they are subject to damage.  DPW recommends the use of a 4″ x 4″ wooden post or 2″ metal pipe with a metal mailbox.

Private Plowing:   The Town of Orange prohibits private plow contractors from pushing snow from private driveways or parking lots onto Town streets.  This practice is dangerous and impedes the Town’s snow removal efforts.  If there is no other alternative to pushing the snow into the street, the plow driver must plow off the windrow left across the street by re-plowing until the road is safe.  This may not necessarily mean bare pavement, but certainly it should be no worse than when the driver began work.

No Parking:   The Town of Orange Snow Removal Ordinance takes effect on November 1 of each year, and continues to April 1 of the following year.  During this time, there shall be no parking on public roads during snowstorms.  Should your vehicle be parked on the street causing an obstruction to snow removal vehicles, your vehicle may be ticketed or removed by the Town of Orange Police Department.  The cost of removal and any other subsequent fees shall be borne upon the owner of the vehicle.

Snow Stakes:   The Town of Orange Highway Department reminds Orange residents to install “snow stakes” now before the ground freezes.  It is difficult to distinguish between the pavement edge and the edge of a lawn in heavy snowfall.  Installing stakes along property edges as close to pavement as possible without interfering with traffic will help homeowners avoid unsightly lawn damage this winter, especially for properties with underground sprinklers or invisible fencing.  Snow stakes should be 30-36″ high and can be purchased at a local hardware store.  If using wooden stakes, paint the top 3″ of the stakes red to increase visibility against snow.

Residents who feel they have a legitimate complaint should call the Town of Orange 

Department of Public Works at (203) 891-4775

Originally Published on: Oct 29, 2014 @ 0:01

Jan 252015

Screen Shot 2015-01-25 at 11.22.29 PMAmity – Region 5 AND Orange Elementary Schools will dismiss early on Monday, Jan. 26 due to the impending blizzard.

The forecast for the storm is still developing so check back for potential additional announcements.

Jan 252015

blizzard+snow+plowFrom the NOAA:

A Blizzard Warning remains in effect from 1 p.m. Monday to Midnight Tuesday night.

Expect heavy, blowing snow with blizzard conditions, snowfall rates of 2 to 4 inches per hour with a total accumulation of 20-30 inches, late Monday night into Tuesday morning. Visibility of 1/4 mile or less at times.

Northerly winds of 30-40 mph with gusts of 55-65 mph. Temperatures in the lower 20s.

Light snowfall will begin Monday morning with accumulations of 1 to 3 inches possibly by the evening rush. Snow will pick up in intensity Monday evening with the heaviest snow and strongest winds from about midnight Monday into Tuesday afternoon.

Life threatening conditions and extremely dangerous travel due to heavy snowfall and strong winds with whiteout conditions. Secondary and tertiary roads may become impassable.

Strong winds may down power lines and tree limbs. Snow drifts could be 4-6 feet.

Do not travel. If you MUST travel, have a winter survival kit with you. If you get stranded, stay with your vehicle. All unnecessary travel is discouraged beginning Monday afternoon to allow people already on the road to safely reach their destinations before the heaviest snow begins and to allow snow removal equipment to clear roads.


Jan 252015

B8IgpEyCYAMfwEkGovernor Dannel Malloy urges residents to have an emergency supply kit handy in preparation for the upcoming storm and whatever it brings with it.

Here is what should be included in the kit:

One gallon of bottled water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation

At least a three-day supply of non-perishable food for you and your pet

A three-day supply of prescription medication

Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both

Flashlight and extra batteries

First aid kit

A whistle to signal for help

Moist towelettes

Plastic trash bags and ties for personal sanitation

Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities

Manual can opener

Local maps

Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger

Extra fuel (stored in a safe container) for the power generator


Stay Warm

In addition, since we live in a cold weather climate, you must think about warmth. It is possible that the power will be out and you will not have heat.

Rethink your clothing and bedding supplies to account for growing children and other family changes.

One complete change of warm clothing and shoes per person, including:

A jacket or coat

Long pants

A long sleeve shirt

Sturdy shoes

A hat and gloves

A sleeping bag or warm blanket for each person


Make a kit for your pet

If you must leave your home and seek shelter at the High Plains Community Center, where they accept pets, you should consider making an emergency kit for your pet.

Keep an Evac-Sack (or pillow case) and supplies handy for your pets. Make sure that everyone in the family knows where it is. This kit should be clearly labeled and easy to carry. Items to consider keeping in or near your pack include:

Photocopies of medical records and a waterproof container with a two-week supply of any medicine your pet requires (Remember, food and medications need to be rotated out of your emergency kit—otherwise they may go bad or become useless.)

Pet first-aid kit and guide book (ask your vet what to include, or visit the ASPCA Store to buy one online)

3-7 days-worth of canned (pop-top) or dry food (be sure to rotate every two months)

Disposable litter trays (aluminum roasting pans are perfect)

Litter or paper toweling

Liquid dish soap and disinfectant

Disposable garbage bags for clean-up

Pet feeding dishes

Extra collar or harness as well as an extra leash

Bottled water, at least 7 days’ worth for each person and pet (store in a cool, dry place and replace every two months)

A traveling bag, crate or sturdy carrier, ideally one for each pet


Blanket (for scooping up a fearful pet)

Recent photos of your pets (in case you are separated and need to make “Lost” posters)

Especially for cats: Pillowcase or Evac-Sack, toys, scoopable litter

Especially for dogs: Extra leash, toys and chew toys, a week’s worth of cage liner

Source: ASPCA.org

Jan 252015

Meteorologist Kevin Arnone

Meteorologist Kevin Arnone

Meteorologist Kevin Arnone was Orange Live’s own personal weather expert for a couple of years, but now he is a big part of the WTNH family.

Although they don’t give him much face time, you can see Kevin’s weather stories on WXEdge.

Here’s what he has to say about the impending snowstorm.

Jan 252015

K9 Loki

K9 Loki

Orange Police Officer Chris Brown has had a busy year. He is the father of a 7 month old daughter, and recently completed his second training course at the Ct State Police K9 Training Academy: first with K9 Major, who was killed in the line of duty on Route 34 and in December with new K9 partner Loki.

Major’s death was a tragic accident early in his career. He was distracted by a flock of sheep while Chris was helping a stranded motorist and ran to the opposite side of the highway. He was struck by a truck when responding to his partner’s command to return. There is a memorial in front of the Police Department in his honor.

Police Chief Robert Gagne encouraged Chris to “grab the leash” again and get another dog.

Asst. Chief Anthony Cuozzo said Chris is good at his job and he and Gagne have the utmost confidence in his ability as a K9 handler. “The Orange PD is lucky to have a lot of community support for our K9s.”

Chris went to a kennel in upstate New York to look at the dogs bred to do police work.

Loki, a sable German Shepherd was the first dog he looked at.

At 14-months old, the dog showed he had a strong work ethic and would do anything for the ball (if you remember Officer Mike Kosh’s dog Max, you know about that passion) which is his reward for a job well done.

“His drive was high and he went the extra mile to get (the ball),” Chris said. “I chose him without hesitation, I know he’ll have the longevity to do the work for 6-7 years.”

As Cuozzo tells it, Chris called Chief Gagne and said, “I found a dog, I need $7,500.” The Chief agreed and asked when he was going to pick him up — Chris said, “He’s with me now, I’ve got him.”

Chris said the training academy was easy for Loki: he did well in everything from obedience to tracking, and he’s very aggressive.  “He’s got a very strong bite.”

“I think he would have been the Top Dog in his class if I hadn’t already gone through the training once last year,” Chris said.

Gagne said Loki was put to the test with farm animals that you would find in Orange, to make sure they wouldn’t be a distraction — he passed with flying colors, focusing on his goal and ignoring everything else in his surroundings.

Every dog has a different personality and is special in their own way. Unlike Max and Major, Loki (now 18 months old) doesn’t bark incessantly when in the patrol car, something Chris appreciates.

The team took to the streets on January 12 and so far, they are the perfect fit.

Loki’s connection to Chris was clear as we sat down together on Jan. 15 at the Orange Police Department.

Both the dog and handler were facing me while we talked and I couldn’t help but notice that when Chris, tilted his head, turned a certain way or looked left or right, Loki — who had his back to his partner — mirrored every move.

Loki and Chris work the night shift and currently, Loki is trained for tracking.

Chris, a member of the regional SWAT and since it does not yet have a K9 member, he believes Loki would be a valuable asset to the team.

Chris is planning to bring Loki to the schools where former K9 handler Mike Kosh is the resource officer and introduce his partner to the children.

Family Dog

Loki belongs to the Town Of Orange, but he will live his entire life as a member of the Brown family.

Chris and his wife knocked a few names around but they quickly settled on Loki, “The God of Mischief” from the Avengers.

The Brown family also has a Maltese/Yorkie Mix that Loki gets along with well. Even though she rules the roost, the friendship was immediate and Loki is gentle with her.

Being a K9 handler means constant training throughout the dog’s career. Chris already has plans to work with other dog handlers from nearby cities and towns to keep Loki’s skills fresh. They will meet on weekends and put their dogs through their paces to keep them fresh. It also helps to socialize them with other dogs.

AKC Reunite Funding

As noted earlier, a good police dog costs about $7,500 and some police departments can’t afford to purchase them.

Chris Sweetwood is from the Trap Falls Kennel Club, one of 5,000 kennel clubs from across the country. One day, while talking to Newtown Police Officer Matt Hayes, with whom he spent time in Iraq, he learned about the town’s need for a K9 and his club donated money to fund the purchase.

After the Newtown school tragedy, the K9 passed on and the town could not afford to buy a replacement. After talking to several other clubs, money was donated to the AKC Reunite, which provides microchips and helps recover lost dogs, for a grant program spearheaded by Sweetwood that provides search and rescue dogs and police dogs where needed. Newtown got a new dog through this grant money and soon after Orange also received a grant for matching funds with which it was able to pay for K9 Major.

AKC Reunite is now working on getting donations to help Monroe and Westport with funding for police K9s as well.

“The AKC community recognizes the significant role of K9 officers, as well as the challenges that many police departments face when attempting to finance new dogs. We were deeply saddened by the unexpected loss of Major, but are thrilled that Loki was able to step into his role so quickly,” said Tom Sharp, CEO, AKC Reunite. “It is our hope that more police departments across the country will utilize the AKC community as a resource for their K9 programs in the future.”

The town of Orange had insurance on Major, so, fortunately it was able to obtain Loki without having to look for money.

In October, Mike Rhodes of the UConn Police, who met Chris Brown during K9 training (with Major) donated $1,000 from the K9 Olympics to help Orange’s K9 program.

Jan 252015

355 Longmeadow Road

355 Longmeadow Road

Marsha Oliver will host an open house at 355 Longmeadow Road on Sunday, Jan. 25 from 1-4 p.m. 

This 5,000 square foot Colonial on the Corner Lot of a Cul De Sac offers 5 large bedrooms with walk in closets, 3 Full Baths, Jacuzzi, 800 SF Family Room, Huge Master Suite with Dressing Room and Formal Dining Room. 
Interior new Construction, Granite, Cherry, Stainless steel kitchen, Walk up Finished Attic.
Central Air, 4 Zone Energy Efficient Hydro Air Heating System, Two Staircases, Hardwood Floors throughout, Possible In law or Au Pair. Hooked up to Gas! 
A Pleasure to tour!  Just Beautiful! 

Jan 242015

K9 Trent and handler/partner Officer Mary Bernegger

K9 Trent and handler/partner Officer Mary Bernegger

On Friday night, Orange Police Officer Mary Bernegger and her K9 partner Trent visited the Orange Congregational Church where the youth group was taking part in the annual fundraising Freeze Out to benefit Habitat for Humanity.

Trent is a trained drug-sniffing dog.

Bernegger hid small amounts of drugs inside the building and told Trent to get to work. The kids and their chaperones watched as he found one item and then another within a few minutes.

Since going into service last June, Trent has done an excellent job at getting illegal drugs off the streets. So far his nose has sniffed out around 20 pounds of marijuana and other drugs.

After he was done impressing his audience, Trent visited with the kids, gave kisses and got plenty of belly rubs while Bernegger answered questions.