FI Fire District: Emergency Access to Homes & Building Structures

FISHERS ISLAND FIRE DISTRICT
P.O. BOX 222

FISHERS ISLAND, NEW YORK 06390

Commissioners
Katherine M. Dollar
John H. Doucette
Paul F. Giles
John F. Klimczak
Gregory C. Thibodeau
Treasurer
Kristen M. Peterson

Secretary
Catherine H. Edwards

October 8, 2021

Dear Homeowner:

In order to provide the best and most timely service to you in the event of an emergency, the Board of Fire Commissioners wishes to draw your attention to an important issue.

As we expect you realize, Fire and EMS equipment is significantly larger than regular automobiles. Yet, this equipment needs to be able to you gain close access to your home and other structures in order for our firefighters to best perform their job. It has come to our attention that in many places trees, shrubs, and other vegetation have been allowed to overgrow driveways and private roads in such a manner that our equipment may not be able to gain timely access to properties. Even in the event that our apparatus is able to get through it may suffer significant damage in doing so. This is not just an issue of scratched paint, although we have suffered plenty of that. In fact, we have had mirrors, lights, and other items broken off and destroyed by vegetation.

We point out, first, that it is in your best interest to be sure that access to your property is maintained so as to allow for the easy entrance of firetrucks and ambulances.

Second, we note that the Southold Town Code requires property owners to keep and maintain properties “so that lawns, hedges, bushes, weeds and trees do not become overgrown and unsightly so as to constitute an unsafe condition or blight. At no time shall landscaping, hedges, bushes, weeds or trees create an impediment to emergency and/or fire rescue vehicle access.” Southold Town Code §100-4 (A)(2).

Please help us to help you.
Very truly yours,

Board of Commissioners of the Fishers Island Fire District

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