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Chief Updates Fire Commission on Borelli Farm

At the North Branford Fire Commission meeting, Chief William Seward updated commissioners on the Borelli Farm fire.

The has stopped burning and the giant pile of brush has been dismantled. The fire burned for two weeks, from April 10 to April 24.

“We dumped millions of gallons of water on it on the first day from onsite pumping,” said . “We could’ve emptied that pond and the fire wouldn’t have been out.”

While Seward said he knew on the first day that the pile would have to be taken apart and considered calling , he knew big equipment would be needed and with that would come a large bill.

Of the four divisions of the DEEP, only the HazMat division has the authority and funds to bring in a contractor.

“There was nothing hazardous when DEEP came on the first day so people called governor, we called our state rep and said, ‘I need help’,” said Seward. “We had to go through State Rep. Candelora and go to the governor’s office because DEEP said they couldn’t help. Finally, the governor’s office told the DEEP, ‘You are going to help.’ It was a tough battle.”

Seward said it was not only a tough battle in order to get help to dismantle the pile, but also for residents living nearby dealing with the smoke.

Seward kept notes throughout the fire, taking photos at the beginning and end of each day. He also noted that the fire could’ve been prevented.

“The decomposed materials’ generated heat started the fire,” said Seward. “Something should’ve happened sooner. He shouldn’t have been able to pile the debris there. Enforcing the town and DEEP’s regulations could have prevented it.”

It was also noted the Seward along with the fire marshal, DEEP and other officials visited Spezzano Farm to discuss a pile of waste material after a town zoning official initiated a complaint.

“That’s now being taken care of,” said Seward.

More on the Borelli Farm Fire

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