Sep 30

Potential Severe Weather Threats This Week


A slow moving frontal boundary, along with a wave of low pressure, will stall over New England late Tuesday into Wednesday. This system is forecast to bring heavy rains, damaging winds, and coastal flooding to the region.

Additionally, a tropical depression has formed in the North Atlantic between Bermuda and the Bahamas. While this storm is still several days away, forecast models show the possibility of impacts on New England as soon as this weekend. These impacts may include coastal flooding, flooding rains, or damaging winds.

Heavy Rain/Flooding

Due to moisture from the Gulf of Mexico being pulled into the system, there is the potential for a widespread 2-4 inches of rainfall across the state starting Tuesday night and lasting through Wednesday night, with more possible in isolated areas. While rivers and streams are running lower than usual due to the drier than normal weather over the past few weeks, this amount of rainfall may still cause flooding in urban and poor-drainage areas and along rivers and streams, particularly ones prone to flash flooding. The National Weather Service has not yet issued any Flood Watches, but continues to monitor data for a possible issuance.

Wind Damage

As the front moves through the region starting Wednesday, winds from the northeast may gust in excess of 40 mph. These winds are expected to persist through Friday. These winds acting on fully leafed trees could result in downed tree, tree limbs, and power lines. While there is still uncertainty as to the exact extent and impact of the wind damage threat, the area forecast to be most at risk is east coastal Massachusetts, including the Cape and Islands.

Coastal Flooding

Astronomical high tides will persist through this Saturday. There may be splashover and very minor coastal flooding associated with the Tuesday night high tide. Beginning Wednesday, winds will be persistent out of the northeast with the potential of gusting in excess of 40 mph perhaps as late as Friday. From Wednesday through Friday. there is a risk across multiple high tide cycles for minor coastal flooding with pockets of moderate flooding across east-facing shores.

The below graphic from the National Weather Service shows astronomical tide tables for Boston, Sandwich, and Nantucket:

Tropical Depression Eleven

Tropical Depression Eleven formed Sunday night in the North Atlantic between Bermuda and the Bahamas. TD Eleven has a greater than 60% chance of strengthening to a tropical storm over the next 48 hours (after which it will be known as Tropical Storm Joaquin). As of 5:00 PM today, TD Eleven was located about 400 miles southwest of Bermuda, had maximum sustained winds of 35 mph, and was moving west at 6 mph. Starting Wednesday, TD Eleven is forecast to turn to the north and increase in forward speed, passing east of the Delmarva Peninsula by Saturday afternoon.

The impacts of TD Eleven or its remnants on Massachusetts will depend on its exact track and strength, but if it passes close by or makes landfall in the New England region, flooding rains, damaging winds, and coastal flooding are possible.

The below graphic from the National Hurricane Center shows the forecast track of Tropical Depression Eleven as of 5:00 PM today:

[Image of 5-day forecast and coastal areas under a warning or a watch]



Briefing documents from the National Weather Service offices in Taunton and Albany are attached.

MEMA Operations

The State Emergency Operations Center is operating at Level 1 (Steady State/Monitoring). MEMA will continue to monitor the progress of Tropical Depression Eleven. MEMA also participated in a conference call with the National Weather Service this afternoon regarding the potential for severe weather this week. A follow-up conference call will take place tomorrow morning.

MEMA will continue to monitor the situation and will disseminate additional Situational Awareness Statements as necessary.

Stay Informed:
For additional information and updated forecasts, see (National Weather Service Taunton) and (National Weather Service Albany)

Utilize Massachusetts Alerts to receive emergency notifications and information from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency and the National Weather Service.  Massachusetts Alerts is a free app that is available for Android and iPhones. To learn more about Massachusetts Alerts, and for information on how to download the free app onto your smartphone, visit:

Utilize MEMA’s real-time power outage viewer to stay informed about current power outages in your community and region, and across the state, including information from utility companies about restoration times:


Online Resources:
For additional information and resources, visit:
Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency at
MEMA’s Facebook page:
MEMA Twitter: @MassEMA
Federal Emergency Management Agency at
National Weather Service/Taunton at
National Weather Service/Albany, NY at
National Weather Service Weather Prediction Center:
National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center:
Northeast River Forecast Center:
Mass211 at


Sep 28

Brewster Firefighters Respond to Harwich Structure Fire


At 9:27 a.m. on Friday September 25, the Brewster Fire Department responded on a line box assignment with Ladder 237 under the direction of Captain Jeff Sturtevant to the Town of Harwich for a reported structure fire at 37 Pleasant Lake Avenue.  Upon arrival of first due Harwich units heavy fire was found blowing out of the first-floor of a large 2 ½ story wood frame private dwelling rapidly spreading throughout other areas of the structure. Harwich Fire Chief Norman Clarke immediately called for a working fire assignment and shortly thereafter a second alarm, bringing personnel and apparatus to the scene from Brewster, Orleans, Dennis, Chatham, Eastham and Yarmouth, as well as numerous move-ups throughout the area to provide station coverage.


Due to the heavy fire throughout the structure, difficult access to the front and rear of the building due to heavy brush and other material in the yard and apparent hoarding conditions throughout the building, the Incident Commander made the decision to fight the fire from the exterior using large-diameter hand lines, deck guns and elevated master streams. The heavy fire caused many parts of the structure to collapse early in the incident which complicated the fire attack and prevented firefighters from entering the dwelling.


Brewster Ladder 237 was instructed to set up on side “A” or the front of the structure and prepare to use their elevated master stream device. A Harwich engine provided a water supply for the aerial and the unit was placed into service. A Brewster ambulance also responded to the incident and provided on scene medical coverage.


On the second alarm request a Brewster engine responded to Harwich Station 2 for coverage and a Dennis engine was dispatched to provide coverage in Brewster. Firefighters remained on scene for several hours wetting down the collapsed building components as large construction equipment demolished the unsafe structure allowing firefighters to extinguish numerous pockets of active fire.


There were no reported injuries. The cause and origin of the fire are under investigation by Harwich Police and Harwich Fire Department. All Brewster apparatus were placed back in service at 2:27 p.m.


Sep 28

Brewster Firefighters Respond to Harwich Structure


At 4:59 p.m. on Saturday September 26, the Brewster Fire Department responded on a line box assignment with Ladder 237 under the direction of Captain Kevin Varley to the Town of Harwich for a reported structure fire at 212 Lathrop Avenue.  Upon arrival of first due Harwich unit heavy smoke was found emanating from the second floor and roof of the 2 ½ story wood frame private dwelling. The Incident Commander Harwich Fire Chief Norman Clarke immediately called for a working fire assignment bringing additional units from Brewster and Dennis Fire Departments to the scene.  A quick size-up of the structure by Harwich Car 71 (Deputy Chief Kent Farrenkopf) found a second floor bedroom fully involved in fire.  An aggressive interior attack by firefighters using an 1 ¾ attack line coupled with coordinated ventilation from the exterior of the structure allowed firefighters to rapidly knock down the heavy fire in the bedroom. On arrival the Brewster Ladder was assigned as the rapid intervention crew (RIC) and also assisted with ventilation of the structure using positive pressure fans.


Fortunately for the owners the quick and aggressive work of the Harwich Fire Department prevented the fire from extending into the attic and limited fire damage to the room of origin.


There were no reported injuries. The cause and origin of the fire are under investigation by Harwich Police and Harwich Fire Department. All Brewster apparatus were placed back in service at 6:36 p.m.


Sep 24




FRAMINGHAM, MA – During Emergency Preparedness Month, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) continues to highlight the importance of building an emergency kit.


“Building an emergency kit is an important component of personal and family preparedness,” states MEMA Director Kurt Schwartz.  “Emergency kits should include essentials items that will help sustain you and your family for up to three days in the event you are isolated in your home without power during a disaster.”


While some items, such as bottled water, food, a flashlight, radio and extra batteries, first aid kit, sanitation items and clothing should be in everyone’s kit, it is important to customize your kit to meet your unique needs and those of your family. Consider adding medications, extra eyeglasses, contact lenses, dentures, extra batteries for hearing aids, medical equipment, oxygen tanks, children’s items, food and supplies for pets and service animals, and any other items you or your family members might need during a disaster.


When building your emergency kit, MEMA recommends using the following list or viewing a printer friendly version of the Emergency Kit Checklist.


Key Items to Include in Your Emergency Kit

  • Bottled water (1 gallon per person/per day for 3 days).
  • Canned goods and nonperishable foods, particularly those that do not need cooking.
  • Manual can opener.
  • Radio (battery-powered or hand crank), NOAA Weather Radio and extra batteries.
  • Flashlight or lantern, with extra batteries (Candles are discouraged, as they present a potential danger.)
  • First aid kit.
  • Diapers, wipes, baby food, formula, if needed.
  • Pet food, supplies, tag, crates, if needed.
  • Prescription medications (2-week supply).
  • Extra pair of eyeglasses, contact lenses, and dentures.
  • Extra batteries for hearing aids, wheelchairs, or other medical equipment.
  • Medical oxygen tanks, if needed.
  • Whistle to signal for help.
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags, soap, sanitizer, and other personal hygiene items.
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities.
  • Watch or battery operated clock.
  • Copies of important documents and IDs.
  • Cell phone and charger (also an auto, solar, or crank charger in case power is out)
  • Cash.
  • Water purification tablets and household chlorine bleach.
  • Camp stove or grill (outdoor use only) with fuel or Sterno and waterproof matches or lighter.
  • Change of clothes and sturdy shoes.
  • Sleeping bags or blankets.
  • Disposable plates, cups, and utensils.
  • Seasonal items such as warm clothes, hat and gloves for winter, and sunscreen for summer.
  • Books, games, puzzles and other comfort items.
  • Duct tape.
  • Plastic sheeting or tarp.


Check your kit at least annually, for any food, water, batteries, or other items that may need to be replaced or have expired.


Consider also building a mobile “go-bag” version of your emergency kit to take with you in case you need to evacuate to a shelter or other location.  When building a ”go-bag,” remember to include necessary pet supplies, such as collars and leashes, a 3-5 day supply of food and water, bowls, litter boxes, and a week’s supply of medications that your pet may be taking, including instructions (in case you and your pet are separated), as well as copies of your pets’ vaccinations, medical records and prescriptions in a clean plastic bag or waterproof container.


MEMA is the state agency charged with ensuring the state is prepared to withstand, respond to, and recover from all types of emergencies and disasters, including natural hazards, accidents, deliberate attacks, and technological and infrastructure failures. MEMA’s staff of professional planners, communications specialists and operations and support personnel is committed to an all hazards approach to emergency management. By building and sustaining effective partnerships with federal, state and local government agencies, and with the private sector – individuals, families, non-profits and businesses – MEMA ensures the Commonwealth’s ability to rapidly recover from large and small disasters by assessing and mitigating threats and hazards, enhancing preparedness, ensuring effective response, and strengthening our capacity to rebuild and recover. For additional information about MEMA and Emergency Preparedness, go to


Continue to follow MEMA updates on Twitter at; Facebook at; YouTube at


Massachusetts Alerts: to receive emergency information on your smartphone, including severe weather alerts from the National Weather Service and emergency information from MEMA, download the Massachusetts Alerts free app. To learn more about Massachusetts Alerts, and for information on how to download the free app onto your smartphone, visit:



Sep 21

Brewster Firefighters Conduct Search for Missing Boater

On Sunday September 20 at 6:40 p.m. the Brewster Fire Department was dispatched to Crosby Landing for a reported sailboat with a raised sail that had run aground approximately one half mile east of Crosby Beach.  Multiple Brewster apparatus including the Brewster rapid launch inflatable Zodiac boat under the direction of Captain Chris Flavell responded to the location.

On arrival fire department personnel removed the boat above the high tide line and quickly determined it had no registration numbers or markings that could assist in identifying its owner.  Fortunately, the boat did have a partially visible Eastham Harbormaster sticker on the bow and an investigation through that office confirmed the boat had been last seen by the Eastham Harbormaster on Boat Meadow Beach the day before with an intact sail.

Car 231 (Fire Chief Moran) arrived on scene and assumed command of the incident with Captain Flavell assigned as the Operations Officer.  Due to the high probability that the vessel may have been occupied, weather conditions at the time, and the approaching darkness a beach, water, and air search was initiated by command.

Brewster firefighters using their all-terrain vehicle (ATV) began a search of the beach and the Orleans and Eastham Fire Departments were also requested to conduct a search of their shoreline. In addition to the beach search a Coast Guard vessel from Cape Cod Canal station responded to the scene to conduct a water search and the Massachusetts State Police Air Unit responded with a helicopter for an air search of the area.

After searching a total of 24 square miles of ocean by air and boat and more than seven miles of coast line the extensive search found no evidence of missing person(s) in the water and was concluded at approximately 9:00 p.m.

Sep 18

Brewster Fire Department Hosts 9/11 Memorial Service


“May We Never Forget”

On Friday September 11, 2015 the Brewster Fire Department hosted a 9/11 remembrance ceremony at Fire Headquarters.

The well attended memorial service honored all first responders and civilian victims who perished in the tragic events that occurred on September 11, 2001 in New York City, Washington D.C, and Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

Participants included the Brewster Fire Department, Brewster Police Department Honor Guard, Brewster Fire Department Honor Guard, Orleand Fire Department, Brewster Town officials, local Scout groups, and other regional emergency service organizations and first responders. Pastor William Kaliyadan of Our Lady of The Cape Church provided the invocation and Harwich Deputy Fire Chief Kent Farrenkopf and Brewster Police Captain Heath Eldredge read passages of reflection and prayer.

Superb renditions of the National Anthem, Let There Be Peace on Earth, America the Beautiful, and God Bless America were sung by theNauset Regional Middle School Chorus led Beverly DiPaola. Sergeant Jim Rosato of the Orleans Police Department provided an outstanding performance of Amazing Grace on the bagpipes.

Special thanks go to Ralph and Rose Ingegneri and Michael and Laura Fitzgerald for donating the flowers for the event and for their assistance in developing the memorial program.

The Brewster Fire Department would like to thank all of the members of our community who joined us in remembering the victims of the tragic terrorist events that occurred on September 11, 2001.

“God Bless America”



Sep 09

Brewster Firefighters Respond to Overturned Sailboat

At 8:48 a.m. on Wednesday September 9 the Brewster Fire Department was dispatched to a reported overturned sailboat with a person in distress in Cape Cod Bay off Saint’s Landing. Residents of a private home off Robbins Hill Road called 911 after noticing the overturned boat approximately 1000 yards offshore while working outside on their second floor deck. Brewster units responding included Car 231 (Chief Moran) who responded to the reporting parties address to obtain a direct line of site with the distressed individual and coordinate operations, Engine 234, Ambulance 243, and Car 230 with the inflatable Zodiac boat. On arrival at Saints landing Captain Jeff Sturtevant assumed operational command of the launching of the Zodiac and subsequent rescue operation.

While enroute Chief Moran requested the response of the Dennis Fire Departments boat from Sesuit Harbor who also responded with the Dennis Harbormaster on board. Prior to the rescue boats arriving at the location a privately owned skiff which had been in the area arrived at the overturned boat and was able to move the individual out of the water and onto their boat. Upon arrival of the Brewster Zodiac the sailboat operator was evaluated by personnel and ultimately refused medical treatment. Assistance in overturning the boat was provided by the Dennis Fire Department and Harbormaster. All mutual aid and Brewster units were placed back in service by approximately 9:45 a.m.

Photos by Craig Chadwick

Sep 09

Brewster Fire Department Responds to Orleans Structure Fire


On Saturday September 5 at 1:30 p.m. Ladder 237, Ambulance 243 (coverage), Car 231 (Chief Moran), and Engine 234 responded to Daniels Recycling Center in Orleans on a second alarm structure fire response. On arrival Orleans Chief Pike reported heavy smoke showing from a 100’ x 100’ one story non-combustible recycling center building with activation of the automatic sprinkler system. Based on the size of the building and the unknown location of the fire Chief Pike requested a working fire assignment bringing additional mutual aid units to the scene and to cover Orleans headquarters. First arriving crews immediately stretched attack lines into the structure where they located a large pile of recycled mattresses burning. Orleans Deputy Chief Geof Deering arrived on scene and assumed command of the fire and after an initial review of the incident requested a second alarm for additional manpower to the scene.


On arrival Brewster Ladder 237 was assigned to side “B” of the building and prepared their aerial for use. The ladder crew also assisted opening up the rear side “C” of the building and stretching a 2 ½” attack line into the interior. The Engine 234 crew arrived on the second alarm and was assigned to assist the ladder crew with their operation and back up interior fire suppression crews on side “A” of the fire building. Additional mutual aid engine companies from Harwich, Dennis, and Eastham Fire Departments arrived on scene and were assigned various fireground tasks including the stretching of back-up attack lines, RIT, ventilating the building, checking for fire extension, and relief of interior crews. Due to the fire burning deeply within the pile of mattresses personnel from the recycling center were tasked with the difficult job of using backhoes and other large equipment to remove the burning pile from the building and place it on the exterior for final extinguishment.  During the fire a Yarmouth engine company and ambulance provided coverage to Brewster. The fire was placed under control by command at approximately 2:40 p.m. and all Brewster units were returned to service at 3:45 p.m.

Sep 04

Emergency Preparedness Month

Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency

Declares September as

“Emergency Preparedness Month”


To prepare for a hurricane, the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) encourages all individuals and families to:

Build an Emergency Kit: 

Every home and business should have a stocked basic Emergency Kit that contains items and supplies that would help support you and your family during extended power outages or while you cannot get to a store. While some items are commonplace, such as bottled water and food, each kit should be customized to the needs of your family and should include medications and medical supplies, children’s items, and food and supplies for pets. To learn more about what a basic Emergency Kit should include please see our printer friendly checklist: Emergency Kit Checklist

Create A Family Emergency Plan:

Create A Family Emergency Communications Plan

Develop a Family Emergency Communications Plan in case family members are separated from one another during an emergency. This plan should also address reunification after the immediate crisis passes.

  • Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to serve as the Family Emergency Communications Plan contact person.  During and immediately after a disaster occurs, it is often easier to access a long distance telephone number than a local one. Also, calling outside a disaster area is usually easier than calling into the same area. Text messages and the internet often have the ability to work in the event of phone service disruption or congestion.
  • Keep a list of important contact phone numbers (particularly if your cell phone is lost or dead). Make sure everyone knows the name, address and telephone number of the Family Emergency Communications Plan contact person. Children should know their parent/ caregiver’s full name, home address, and an emergency contact number.
  • Create a personal support network and a list of contacts that include caregivers, friends, family, neighbors, service/ care providers, and others who might be able to assist during an emergency.
  • Designate two meeting areas for family members – one within your neighborhood, and one outside of your community (as an alternate location in case you can’t get home).

Create A Plan to Evacuate

Hurricanes may require evacuations, particularly for those who live or work in Hurricane Evacuation Zones . If you live or work in an evacuation zone, you should plan for and be prepared to evacuate during a hurricane as part of your emergency plan. Listen to local and state officials and weather forecasts before and during a hurricane for evacuation information. If evacuations are necessary, local and state officials may use the evacuation zones (Zone A, Zone B or Zone C) to identify areas to be evacuated.  Make a Family Emergency Plan in case of evacuation: Where will you go? How will you get there? What will you bring? How will you prepare your home before you leave? To learn more, visit the Evacuation webpage.

Create A Plan to Shelter-In-Place

During hurricanes, if you do not evacuate, you will likely “shelter-in-place”. As part of your emergency plan, consider what you would need or would need to do in advance of sheltering in place. This includes building an Emergency Kit and Preparing Your Home and Property for a Hurricane . For more information and considerations, see MEMA Shelter in Place webpage.

Stay Informed

Know what potential risks your community and neighborhood are susceptible to in a hurricane: Know Your (Evacuation) Zone. Sign up for your community’s emergency alerting system to get local information.Carefully monitor the media and follow instructions from public safety officials as a storm approaches. Be aware of severe weather warnings and watches, which can be obtained from media sources, the National Weather Service, a NOAA all-hazards radio, and Massachusetts Alerts . 2-1-1 is the Commonwealth’s primary telephone call center during times of an emergency and is able to provide information on emergency resources and is free and available 24 hours a day, confidential, multilingual, and TTY compatible. Learn more about how to Be Informed during a hurricane.

More Tips

  • Ask your local emergency management director about local public shelters and planned community evacuation routes.
  • If you do not have them, consider obtaining health and life insurance to provide protection in case of a disaster. See the Preparing Your Home and Property for a Hurricane webpage for information on obtaining property insurance and document protection.
  • Prepare your family for storm related power outages. Tropical storms and hurricanes have left hundreds of thousands of people without power for days or weeks. See MEMA’s Power Outages During Warm Weather webpage for tips and information.
  • Fuel your automobile.  Service stations may be closed during and after the storm.  If you do not have a car, make arrangements for transportation with friends, relatives, or with your local Emergency Management Office.
  • Prepare your family for a hurricane using your cellphone, computer and other technology by visiting our Use Technology to Get Ready for Emergencies
  • Plan for your pets before a hurricane occurs. Consider where you may bring them if you need to evacuate and have some pet supplies as part of your emergency kit. Lear more about how to prepare your pets for emergencies on our Pets and Animals in Emergencies


Aug 27

Barnstable County Technical Rescue Team Responds to Brewster


On Wednesday August 26 at approximately 8:00 a.m. the Brewster Police Department received a call reporting a 65 year old male who had been missing from his residence adjacent to Nickerson State Park for approximately 12 hours. Brewster Police immediately initiated their missing person protocols which include the response of assets from the Brewster Fire Department.


To ensure proper command and control of the incident and coordination of resources Police and Fire commanders established a unified command post in the parks Administrative building.  State, County, and local police assets including a State Police helicopter, K-9 units, ATV’s, off road motorcycles, and patrol vehicles were quickly deployed throughout the area.


After several hours of intensive searching of areas and roads accessible to the off road and K-9 units the Barnstable County Technical Rescue Team was requested to the scene to conduct a ground based wide area search of the park. Twenty members of the rescue team along with several Chief officers, DCR staff, and the Barnstable County Incident Management Team operated at the scene. The Red Cross canteen unit and the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services rehabilitation unit also responded to the incident.


A plan dividing the search area into four sectors was developed and one Technical Rescue Squad consisting of five personnel with GPS equipment was assigned to each. At approximately 2:30 p.m. the missing individual was found and brought to the command post where he was evaluated by EMS personnel and returned to his family.


This response of the Technical Rescue Team highlights the type of resources and services the unit is able to offer local police and fire departments. The team is trained to respond to and operate at building collapses, trench rescues, confined space rescues, high angle rope rescues, and wide area searches such as the incident identified above. The regional team consists of 50 highly trained firefighters from a number of participating Cape Cod fire departments.


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