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School’s Open, Know The Rules Of The Road

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Aug 312021
 

stop for school bussesThe answer to the most asked question (here at Orange Live) with a new comprehensive illustration.

The most read story on Orange Live all year long is one that was originally published in Feb. 2013, “What Happens If You Don’t Stop For A School Bus With Flashing Lights?”

Watch out, Bus drivers are keeping an eye out and police responding to complaints of drivers who do not comply with the laws regarding stopping for stopped school busses.

In Aug. 2014, the Orange Board Of Education Vice Chairman said, “Coming soon to Orange: if you pass a bus, a camera will take a picture of your vehicle and you will get a summons.”

From the State Website the whole story, including fines:

You want to know the legislative history of the act requiring police, on receipt of a written complaint from a school bus driver, to issue a written warning or summons to a motor vehicle owner for illegally passing a stopped school bus.

For your information, we also have appended a chart showing the disposition of cases in which vehicles failed to stop for a school bus from 2007 through 2011, according to figures provided by the Judicial Branch. We were unable to determine how many of these cases were based on a bus driver’s written report. Representatives of the Chief State’s Attorney’s office and the Judicial Branch said the state does not track those numbers.

BACKGROUND

A motor vehicle cannot pass a stopped school bus displaying flashing red signal lights, but must stop at least 10 feet before or behind such a bus (CGS § 14-279). Under the law, police must issue a written warning or a summons to the owner of a vehicle who illegally passes a school bus “upon a written report from any school bus operator…specifying the license plate number, color and type of any vehicle” the bus driver sees violating the law. The driver’s report must also note the date, approximate time, and location of the violation.

PA 85-71

A provision allowing police to issue a written warning to a vehicle owner on receiving a bus driver’s written report was enacted in 1985 (PA 85-71, originating as HB 5749). The act also allowed anyone over age 18 to submit such a written report.

The Transportation Committee held a hearing on HB 5749 on February 4, 1985. Several people testified in support of the provision, arguing there was insufficient enforcement of the school bus passing law. A Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) representative spoke against the bill.

Sharon Ward, school transportation safety director for a school bus contractor, said “the statute must be changed so that local police and state troopers are required to make arrests when drivers give an adequate amount of information…the marker number, the color and make of the car.”

Another witness, Robin Leeds, executive director of the Connecticut School Transportation Association, said the bill “represents an attempt to address the most serious problem in school transportation, the danger in the unloading zones. Not only do all our fatalities occur here, but our most severe injuries as well. Already this winter, we have seen at least five children hit and seriously injured by motorists who did not stop for the flashing red lights of the school bus. In two of those instances, the motorist said to the officer…I didn’t know I was supposed to stop.”

“It is safe to assume,” she continued, “that those motorists had passed a school bus before. If their license numbers had been turned in by a bus driver and accepted by a policeman…who then sent a written warning…they would have known they were supposed to stop before they hit the children.” She said 20 states already had similar laws.

John O’Connell, DMV’s public transportation administrator, opposed the bill, saying the department had “some…concerns regarding the question of constitutionality and an abuse of such a statute about drivers picking up the plate numbers…”

The House of Representatives considered the bill on April 10, 1985, and passed it after amending it by voice vote to allow, rather than require, police to issue a written warning on receipt of a bus driver’s written report (LCO # 5478).

Speaking in support of the amended bill, Representative Wilber said “the feeling of the [transportation] committee was that most people do not pass school buses intentionally, but they do it forgetfully, and if a warning is issued, they probably will not do it again, or not so likely to do it again.”

Representative Frankel opposed the bill, saying its “fatal flaw” was that it was directed at vehicle owners, rather than the person driving the vehicle when the violation occurred. But Representative Ward, arguing for the bill, said school bus drivers “faced…a dilemma. They see a vehicle pass them illegally…They do not know who the operator is, but they clearly can get a marker number.”

“Nothing in this bill prevents a ticket, if you know who was the driver,” Ward said. “It takes the extra step, however, of allowing a warning to the owner of a vehicle when you cannot identify the operator.”

The House passed the amended bill by a 117 to 32 vote.

The Senate debate occurred on April 17, 1985. Senator Giulietti opposed the measure, saying it did not “really have any teeth” because it allowed, rather than required, police to issue a warning. He also objected to “making school bus drivers or any other person over 18…policemen.” Senator Consoli also objected to giving “non-police personnel” the authority to make a complaint in these cases.

Senator Morano, speaking on behalf of the bill, argued that “any tool…to teach people not to go racing by stopped school buses would be good legislation.” Senator DiBella, also speaking on behalf of the bill, said it would allow a policeman “to issue a warning without being on the scene.”

The Senate passed the bill, as amended by the House, by a vote of 30 to 3.

SUBSEQUENT CHANGES TO THE LAW

PA 85-71 was codified in CGS § 14-279. The statute has since been amended several times, as follows (excluding technical changes):

PA 86-155 changed the law by (1) explicitly requiring vehicles to stop for stopped school buses displaying flashing red signal lights on any highway, private road, parking area, or school property; (2) eliminating the ability of “other persons 18 years of age or over” to submit written reports of vehicles failing to stop; and (3) requiring, rather than allowing, a police officer to issue either a written warning or summons on receiving a school bus driver’s written report.

PA 01-192 expressly required emergency vehicles, such as fire department and police vehicles, to stop at least 10 feet from a school bus displaying flashing red signal lights.

PA 11-255 replaced the fine for a first offense of between $100 and $500 with a $450 fine and allowed video evidence of failing to stop for a school bus.

 

(originally published 2016)

 

Full Buck Moon Still Big and Beautiful

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Jul 232021
 

full buck moon

Tonight, Friday, July 23, the full moon rises after sunset, look towards the southeast to watch it rise above the horizon. It reaches its prime at 10:37 p.m.

The July full moon is known as any of the following:

• Full Buck Moon – because in July the antlers of male deer (bucks) are in full growth mode. Bucks shed and regrow their antlers each year, producing a larger and more impressive set as the years go by.

• Full Thunder Moon – because thunderstorms are most frequent during this time.

Another name for this month’s Moon was the Full Hay Moon, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac.

How Do I Make Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs?

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Mar 312021
 

 hard-boiled-eggsI learned how to make hard-boiled eggs from my mom who had to make enough every year to satisfy her three kids’ creative desires at Easter time,

You need to hard boil the eggs to the perfect texture so they don’t crack while they are boiling and are easy to peel when you are ready to eat them.

My granddaughter loves these!

Let’s get started:

Put your eggs in a single layer in a large saucepan, and cover them with an inch or two of cold water. Starting with cold water and gently bringing the eggs to a boil will help keep them from cracking. Add a tablespoon of vinegar and a half teaspoon of salt to the water. Put the burner on high and bring the eggs to a boil. As soon as the water starts to boil, remove the pan from the heat for a few seconds.

Turn the heat down to low and return the pan to the burner. Let simmer for one minute.

After a minute, remove the pan from the heat, cover, and let sit for 12 minutes.

Depending on the number of eggs you’ve made, you can check one egg to see how it’s done. Remove from the pan, run under cold water, and peel if it’s to your liking, rinse the other eggs under cold water, let them sit in the cold water for a while, then remove them and let them dry any way you prefer, on paper towels on a cake rack (whatever). When they are dry and cool you can get to work coloring them.

Store in the refrigerator in a ziplock bag or covered bowl to keep the egg smell from your fridge.

AVANGRID Offers Safety Tips for Extreme Cold Weather

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Jan 282021
 

With the freezing temperatures and sub-zero wind chills forecast for this weekend, we thought it was a good idea to republish this informative story containing tips on many ways of taking care of yourself in the extreme cold.  

Weather Advisory Issued to Customers of United Illuminating, Southern Connecticut Gas

AVANGRID a diversified U.S. energy company, and its subsidiaries in Connecticut and Massachusetts are urging customers to take measures to stay safe and warm during the bitterly cold weather that’s forecast for New England.

The risk of fire, carbon monoxide poisoning and other hazards can increase as residents try to stay warm during the extreme cold. As this extremely cold weather settles in, the companies encourage customers to look around their homes and make sure they’re able to keep themselves and their families warm and to identify any potential safety risks that must be addressed.

Staying Warm

If you are unable to keep your home safely and comfortably heated, call Infoline at 211 for resources that can help you and your family.

Exposure to extreme cold can cause serious medical conditions including hypothermia and frostbite. To avoid them, stay indoors if possible and wear warm clothing, including head covering and gloves or mittens.

For information about frostbite, hypothermia, and other concerns, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/winter/index.html.

Fire and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Incidences of fire and carbon monoxide poisoning rise during cold weather, as a result of malfunctioning appliances, poor ventilation, and improper use of heat sources. Place smoke and carbon monoxide alarms on every level of your home, outside of sleeping areas, and inside each bedroom. Test your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors monthly to make sure the batteries are working, and replace the batteries at least twice a year.

Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, colorless, and tasteless toxic gas. It is a product of fuel combustion, and a buildup can result from a furnace or space heater problem. Symptoms of CO poisoning can mimic flu, so make sure the CO detector is functioning.

For more information about fire and carbon monoxide dangers, visit the National Fire Protection Association, https://www.nfpa.org/News-and-Research/News-and-media/Press-Room/News-releases/2016/Winter-weather-months-prompt-heating-and-carbon-monoxide-safety-warnings.

Stove and Range

The stove, range, and other kitchen appliances are designed for cooking, not heating. Use them as specified in the manufacturer’s instructions. In addition to creating a fire hazard, a natural gas stove or oven can present a carbon-monoxide risk when used for heating.

Space Heaters

Use only space heaters that have been tested and certified by a nationally recognized testing laboratory. Read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions, and never use a device designed for outdoor use indoors. Place the space heater on a level surface away from foot traffic, at least 3 feet from combustible materials. Inspect the cord for fraying, and after plugging it in, periodically feel the cord near the outlet to make sure the plastic is not getting hot. Do not run the space heater cord under a rug or carpeting, and never use an extension cord for a space heater. Keep children and pets away, and turn off the space heater when you leave the area.

More space heater safety information can be found on the U.S. Department of Energy website, at https://energy.gov/energysaver/portable-heaters.

Heating, Hot Water, and Plumbing

Keep the furnace area clear of flammable materials and keep vents clear to provide a good air supply to your heating system to ensure proper combustion.

Water pipes that are exposed to cold temperatures may freeze and burst. Don’t ignore drips or odd noises from your heating system — call your heating company to investigate. Wrap exposed pipes in your basement with pipe insulation to help them retain heat and avoid freezing.

The American Red Cross offers additional tips for avoiding frozen pipes at https://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster/winter-storm/preventing-thawing-frozen-pipes.

Republican Headquarters Opens In Orange

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Oct 132020
 

screen-shot-2016-09-24-at-8-41-23-pmThe Orange Republican Headquarters is located at the former Battle Zone, 371 Boston Post Road.
As the November 3 elections get closer, they are always looking for volunteers.  This is also a good opportunity for high school students for service hours.  All are welcome.
For more information call 203-915-6629.

Where Were You When Terrorists Hit Our Shores 19 Years Ago?

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Sep 112020
 

twin-towers-images2Where were you 19 years ago today? The memory of 911 is still etched in my brain. I recall the conversations I had with a co-worker as I gave him blow-by-blow reports of what was happening in America. The newsroom at the newspaper did not have televisions and when I first told him that the South Tower had collapsed he didn’t believe me.

Then I told him that the North Tower was “gone.” By then the bosses had begun watching the horror on the internet and every editor stopped whatever they were working on to find a local angle from his or her town to include in a 911 edition of the papers.

For me, Tuesday was deadline day, so I didn’t have enough time to find Orange, Bethany, or Woodbridge residents with a personal connection to the tragedy.

(source: https://bit.ly/2cBabrB)

(source: https://bit.ly/2cBabrB)

Instead, I wrote a column documenting my day from the time I was awakened by a phone call telling me to “turn on the tv”; to seeing the second plane hit the south tower; to the conversations with my co-worker and his reaction to what I was telling him; and finally the numbness I felt that day.

What I remember most from the 911 attacks is just how kind everyone was for nearly an entire week afterward.

My children and I answered the call when the donation of heavy work gloves, dust filter masks, bottled water, and socks (to help protect the search and rescue and cadaver dogs’ feet).

In 2001, my kids were 14 and 15 years old. They knew what was going on, they witnessed it on TV at school and, I remember they didn’t need a lot of reassurance. They were upset but didn’t dwell on it.

I have not been back to that area of New York since that day.

For all the kids who are now in High School and were too young to remember and for all the children who were born after 2001, here is a timeline of what happened that day 19 years ago:

8:46:26 a.m.: American Airlines Flight 11 impacts the north side of the North Tower (1 World Trade Center) of the WTC between the 94th and 98th floors. American Airlines Flight 11 was flying at a speed of 490 miles per hour (MPH).

9:02:54 a.m.: United Airlines Flight 175 impacts the south side of the South Tower of the WTC between the 78th and 84th floors at a speed of over 500 MPH. Parts of the plane including an engine leave the building from its north side, to be found on the ground up to six blocks away.

The Pentagon in Washington, DC gets hit by American Airlines Flight 77 at 9:37 a.m.

(source: https://bit.ly/2cBabrB)

(source: https://bit.ly/2cBabrB)

9:59:04 a.m.: The south tower of the World Trade Center suddenly collapses, plummeting into the streets below. A massive cloud of dust and debris quickly fills lower Manhattan. It is later explained (disinformation) that the collapse was not directly caused by the impact, but the intense heat caused by the fire fueled by the jet’s fuel weakening the steel support beams of the concrete floors. The WTC towers were built to withstand a 707 being flown into them. A 767 carries almost the same amount of fuel as a 707.

The Palisades seismic data recorded a 2.1 magnitude earthquake during the 10-second collapse of the South Tower at 9:59:04 and a 2.3 quake during the 9-second collapse of the North Tower at 10:28:31 a.m.

10:06.05 a.m.: According to seismic data, United Airlines Flight 93 crashes near Shanksville, PA, about 80 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.

Here is a breakdown of the victims:

Deaths by Area of Attack Deaths
World Trade Center 2,606
Airlines 246
Pentagon Building 125
Hijackers 19
Total number of people who died in the 9/11 attacks 2,996
Casualties in the World Trade Center and Surrounding Area Deaths
Residents of New York 1,762
Persons in North Tower (Tower 1) 1,402
Persons in South Tower (Tower 2) 614
Residents of New Jersey 674
Employees of Marsh Inc. 355
Firefighters 343
Employees of Aon Corporation 175
Port Authority police officers 37
Police officers 23
Paramedics 2
1 firefighter was killed by a man who jumped off the top floors

Talking To Your Kids About 9/11

My granddaughter is 8 (almost 9 years old) and I asked her last week if she knew what 9/11 was all about.

She said she’d heard about it, but “not really.”

I asked if she wanted to know more, and being an inquisitive child, she, of course, said “yes.”

I had found a documentary that I’d DVR’d a few years ago, that I thought would give her a sense of what happened without upsetting her or scaring her too much. It didn’t show the people jumping from the upper floors, or anyone on fire running through the lobby of Tower One. It didn’t dwell on the heartbroken family members pasting photos of their loved ones up on the bulletin boards near the site. Just the basics.

And as she watched it, I shared some thoughts about what she was seeing. I told her that I knew a Paramedic and a Priest from Bethany who helped the people deal with the terrible things they’d seen and the guilt they felt about surviving on that day when so many others died.

She has an appreciation for the first responders who risked their lives to help save others, and the many who gave their lives during that effort.

She liked that her mommy and uncle were willing to help donate things that the rescuers needed in the days after the attacks. And she understands so much more than most kids her age without having night terrors about what she’d learned. Just the knowledge and appreciation for those who were willing to help.

Last night she said a prayer for the people who died and their family members who are missing them on this day.

Once Again, For Those Who Choose To Accuse… Orange Live’s Political Policy

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Aug 242020
 

Screen shot 2013-06-13 at 2.17.31 PMSince launching Orange Live in May 2012, some residents, and politicians wondered how I would go about covering local, state, and national elections.

The answer is simple — fairly.

I will post information about candidates, issues, and events as they are submitted as long as it is not an attack piece on an opponent.

If there happens to be more information about one party than another, it is simply that one side has a better publicity person than the other.

Note: In a past state election, I got some grief from a reader who believed I was taking sides by running one candidate’s press releases and nothing from another candidate. This was because HER camp sent me press releases and HIS didn’t. I do not go out looking for political commentary.

I will not be endorsing local candidates on Orange Live but I will do profiles of the key candidates. I do not attend political fundraisers, simply because if I can make it to one, but am busy during the other party’s event I will be accused of choosing sides. I will though, accept a well-composed photo from these events and publish them.

If I request a candidate’s profile information or photograph, please send it to me as soon as possible to orangectlive01@gmail.com.

However, I will not run anything that resembles negative campaigning on Orange Live. Some may call that censorship — but I believe that candidates need to run on their own merits, and I plan to allow my readers to learn about the candidates without the mudslinging that will be found on many other news media outlets.

Orange Live readers know that I don’t allow comments on the website, but comments may be posted on our Facebook page. BUT If I notice people attacking or insulting others I will remove the negative comments, so, it’s simple, be kind. We DO have many young people who follow Orange Live and we will not be a party to exposing them to political negativity. Be civil. Praise your own candidate, but do not post anything ugly about their opponent on any Orange Live related pages.

Just as I do not step up to the voting table with you and help you fill in the circles on your ballot, I will let YOU decide who the best candidate is for YOU and your family.

I will go to the polls, take photos of  Democrats, Republicans, and Independent candidates and try to have an equal amount of photographs from both sides (After 20 years of covering Orange, I know that some people actually count images and judge) and finally, I will get the results up online ASAP.

… and that is my political coverage policy.

 

This policy has been in place for 6 years and will never change. 

No, The Town Will Not Pick Up Your Storm Debris

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Aug 072020
 
storm damage

A resident sent this message tonight: “Is the town picking up debris from the storm? My neighbors told me if we pile it up near the road the town will take it away.” 

The answer is, “No.” According to the Highway Department, there are no plans for the town to remove any of the mess left by the storm.

But, if you have a truck, trailer or a neighbor with either who is willing to help, the Transfer Station is open on Sunday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for your convenience.

I hope this clears up any confusion.

Fireworks Are Still Illegal and Dangerous: Read on, Orange

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Jun 242020
 

It’s that time of year again, people have already begun lighting up fireworks across the state, as the Fourth of July approaches, fireworks vendors are beginning to sell their wares.

Sparklers are dangerous, they can reach a temperature of 1,800 degrees and burn your hands and/or clothing.

We all look forward to the summer weather and celebrating the opportunity to be outdoors at picnics, barbecues, and other events.  At many of these smaller than usual gatherings, the use of fireworks, both legal and illegal, is on the rise. When used legally and safely by professionals, fireworks can be enjoyed.  Unfortunately, numerous incidents of injuries, fatalities, or accidental fires caused by the private use of fireworks are reported each year across the United States.

Several years ago, the State of Connecticut made it legal for any person sixteen (16) years of age or older to possess, sell, or use any sparkling device.  The use of any type of sparkling device by a person under the age of 16 is illegal.

NO OTHER TYPES OF FIREWORKS ARE LEGAL UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF PUBLIC ACT 00-198!  This includes, but is not limited to, devices known as “M-80’s,” “Cherry Bombs,” “Bottle Rockets,” and any device that is explosive or aerial such as ground displays or roman candles.  While the use of sparkling devices is legal in Connecticut, they can be dangerous if not used properly.

The Orange Fire Marshal’s Office asks that you remember the following safety guidelines.

•   When handling a sparkling device, wear protective goggles and gloves.  Sparklers can reach temperatures of up to 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit once they are lit and many burns and eye injuries have been reported as a result of improper use.

•    Do not use ANY open flame devices when dry ground conditions are present. The Fire Danger Level is available at their website, www.orangefiremarshal.com or by calling the Fire Marshal’s Office at 203-891-4711.

•   Be aware of your surroundings.  Be sure others are a safe distance away before igniting any sparkling device.

•    DO NOT ALLOW CHILDREN TO HANDLE ANY TYPE OF SPARKLING DEVICE.

•    Always have a source of extinguishment.  A garden hose or fire extinguisher can quickly put out a small fire before it gets out of control, only if it is close by.  Anytime there is a fire or other emergency, do not hesitate to call 911.  A delay in a call can make a tragic difference in the outcome.

The local and state fire officials want everyone to enjoy the summer season.  Please keep these tips in mind to ensure that it is a safe one.  If you would like more information, call the Orange Fire Marshal’s Office  Monday through Friday from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm at 203-891-4711.

Postponed: Pancake Supper To Benefit The Volunteer Fire Department

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Mar 232020
 

The Orange Volunteer Fire Department Auxiliary has postponed its 11th annual Pancake Supper that was scheduled for Wednesday, April 22, at Chip’s Restaurant, 321 Boston Post Road, Orange.

Here are the details of the event which we will update when it is rescheduled:

The menu includes Pancakes, Eggs, choice of Bacon or Sausage and a beverage.

There will be an early seating at 5:30 p.m. and late seating at 6:30 p.m.

Prices are: $12 for Adults, $6 Children 10 and under, gratuity included.

Tickets must be purchased in advance as we a limited number of seats available.

Tickets may be purchased from any Auxiliary member or at Knight’s Inc., 286 Boston Post Road. Orange. All proceeds benefit the Orange Volunteer Fire Department.

For further information, email Lynn@ LMK415@yahoo.com or visit our website at www.orangevfd.com