Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Norwalk: Emergency Theater vs. Emergency Preparedeness

Last weeks storm brought down over a hundred trees and left many without power in addition to the flooding, so it was with some surprise that this morning's newspaper The Hour(subscription) revealed a tempest in a teapot stirred into action by The League of Women Voters and two common council members; Phyllis Bolden and Kevin Poruban. Diane Lauricella, President of the Norwalk Chapter of the League of Women Voters:
On Saturday, standing with two members of the Common Council's Public Health, Welfare & Emergency Management Committee, Lauricella called for the creation of an Emergency Response and Public Outreach Task Force, saying the city is unprepared for events like Hurricane Katrina or the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
Apparently Mr. Poruban felt that this announcement needed more than just his cell phone participation.
Lauricella, with Councilmen Phyllis Bolden and Kevin Poruban, called for the training of residents to act as responders in the case of an emergency. Westport and Wilton have enacted such programs, called Community Emergency Response Teams.
It's much more dramatic to be calling for programs that deal with unprecedented emergencies than focusing on the real emergencies faced by Norwalkers due to sewer system inadequacies, unpruned and rotting trees and garbage in storm drains.

The Norwalk Hour, Moccia defends city's preparedness efforts by PATRICK R. LINSEY, 09/12/06


GMR said...

Why aren't power lines buried? Wouldn't that reduce most of the power outage problems? I grew up in Virginia, and there were no visible power lines in my neighborhood. It looks a lot nicer too.

Genghis Conn said...


I work in Springfield, where power lines are buried.

Except, this being Springfield, they did it in the most obnoxious way possible. Power lines are right under the roads in some cases, as are major fiber-obtic cables. So whenever they need to work on the lines, they tear up the roads. State St., which is one of the main drags, has lines right down the middle of it. It can get annoying.

Also, it apparently cost an awful lot of money to bury the lines.

bluecoat said...

Mayor Knopp and the Democrat controlled Norwalk Council did let the infrastucture go to hell but Moccia does seem interested in reversing that

a better article from the Norwalk Hour is in today's edition where the editorial board call s for Tacco to apolgize to the people of the state for his wrongdoing and then do the right thing by stepping down permanently form the CT Supreme Court.

turfgrrl said...

Ah ... buried powerlines ... yes they absolutely should be buried. But in the meantime a little proactive pruning might go a long way to stemming the power outages. At least the ones caused by downed lines. The transformers that keep blowing are another matter.

You'd think the state DPUC would be a big proponent of underground powerlines, btw. They could come up with some, if x outages have happened than the power company has to bury the lines on that street. Over time, the problem areas get solved for and the ones that don't cause a problem are ignored. Not perfect but I think somewhat cost effective.

Anonymous said...

bluecoat - although I did not read the article, I am surprised that it called upon Sullivan to step down from the Supreme Court when, in fact, he already has done so. Sullivan is no longer on the State Supreme Court.

And, yes, he should apologize for doing something very stupid (although I don't think any real harm was done).

turfgrrl said...

bluecoat Mayor Knopp and the Democrat controlled Norwalk Council did let the infrastucture go to hell The 2001-2004 period in question is not the sole contributing factor in infrastructure meltdowns. The previous Republican administrations did their fair share of not paying attention to infrastructure improvements. I think its more reflective of generational differences than ideological ones.

ctblogger said...


In full disclosure, do you hold any political position in Norwalk? If so, is it appropriate to comment on any matters concerning Norwalk and memebrs of the Common Council with notifying the readers about your position?

bluecoat said...

10:34; sullivan steeped down as CJ but unless he's resigned from the court in the last couple of days, he's still a chief judge.

turffgrrl: I have never lived in a state - until CT - where trees weren't routinely trimmed around power lines so they don't topple the lines during a storm the way they routinely do in SW CT; in Fairfield the town even plants trees and allows them to grow around the lines because it looks nice - and then a storm comes and knocks out power and everybody is shocked.

bluecoat said...

the harm done by Sullivan was to the reputation of the court for sure and the cost incurred by the taxpayers to get him to fess up in the proper forum
Not all lessons of Sullivan scandal can will go down as good ones; ex-chief justice's forthrightness sparked scandal; others may take note
New analysis By Alex Wood, Journal Inquirer 09/13/2006

and as I linke the other day, a number of judges spoke of how he ran the court system as an insider;s club - a closed club, too when you consider both Jodi and the legislature have now called their own judicial openness committeses to reacte .

ctblogger said...

with notifying the readers about your position?

Excuse me, I meant to say "without"

Also, I meant to extend this to position you held in Norwalk in the past as well.

bluecoat said...

pardonez mois, I meant to say that Sullivan was still a senior judge, not a chief judge, on the CT Supreme Court.

cgg said...

Bluecoat said: in Fairfield the town even plants trees and allows them to grow around the lines because it looks nice - and then a storm comes and knocks out power and everybody is shocked.

The day after Ernesto, downtown Fairfield looked as though it had been attacked by a giant salad shooter.

turfgrrl said...

bluecoat-- A funny thing about SW CT is that not so long ago, most of the land now covered in trees and suburbs was farm land. Nary a tree in sight according to old photos. Today, SW CT is a special tree haven it seems. I had noted on a recent drive to Washington Depot, that trees were pruned well away from power lines. But I bet we won't see an active campaign to prune trees come out of this or any election cycle.

bluecoat said...

cgg- I know; the distribution lines in fairfield Center should have been buried 25 years ago the way they did in Westport but that's the way it goes; the other thing that's ridiculous is the inland flodding form the Rooster River that nobody wants to deal with - you may recall a lady disappeared in the night from her backyard during the flood a month or so ago; that shouldn't have happened but I do still wonder why her husband didn't notice she was gone until the next morning.