Local Fire Departments Discuss Response Methods at Waterbury-Oxford Airport

Each fire department discussed the merits of fire trucks and other apparatus.


Representatives from the Middlebury, Oxford, Waterbury, Watertown and Woodbury Fire Departments were present at a Monday, March 12, meeting at the Waterbury-Oxford Airport.

Each department discussed what different trucks have to offer so departments know what resources are available during any future incidents in the towns.

Incidents at the Airport This Year

Since the beginning of 2012, there has only been  with an airplane, Middlebury Fire Chief Paul Perrotti said.

A Middlebury man was attempting to land the plane when an indicator showed that his landing gear was not working properly.

Garrett Moore landed the plane successfully after attempts to get the landing gear to work. After several attempts, a green light turned on, to indicate the landing gear was working.

Chief Perrotti said the airport has changed and grown over the years.

"I think it's important that we all work together," he said. "This is a big area with lots of planes that have large fuel tanks."

Perrotti said that if an emergency situation occurs at Oxford Airport, the goes to the scene. If a situation occurred on town of Middlebury property, Perrotti said the Middlebury department will go to the scene then.

"For most situations, we're notified, but we don't respond unless we're asked to," he said.

Perrotti said he is comfortable with how the system works. He answered a question from one of the fire department members in attendance, regarding whether there are hydrants on the Waterbury-Oxford Airport runway.

Perrotti said there are no water hydrants on the runway but foam houses are nearby.


Steve Noreika of the Waterbury Police Department talked about a foam trailer that is provided by the state and available for use by neighboring towns if an incident occurs.

Perrotti talked about the LaFrance vehicle Middlebury has and described it as an attack tanker.

"If I were a chief in Waterbury, I would get this on the highway to quickly knock down a fire," he said.

The truck holds approximately 818 gallons of water.

"This is a perfect truck for our situation," said Perrotti. "We have non-hydrated areas. The truck should be called a savior."

He said the truck is older and he is hoping to work with the town on retrofitting the engine.

At the end of the meeting, Edward B. St. John said the local fire departments working together is great to see.

"When they come together, train together and socialize together, that creates a lasting bond," he said.


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