On Thursday, June 25, at 3:55 pm the Vigilant Fire Company was alerted for a reported brush fire in the vicinity of 10 Middle Neck Road in Great Neck Plaza.
Upon the arrival of the first units, they discovered a rubbish fire in the rear of 15 Cutter Mill Road, which had begun to extend into the building. This incident developed into a five-alarm response, resulting in the loss of four businesses in our community.
The media has done a respectable job of reporting on the incident itself. I write to you today to shed light on a part of this major incident which few know about: the support of the community for us, the firefighters, EMT’s and Paramedics who responded, during this incident.
A major part of any large event in the fire and EMS services is rehabilitation, or rehab as we refer to it. This is an area designated for responders to take a short break during operations, have something to drink, maybe grab a quick snack and then return to the fight. Under normal circumstances, our rehab area is stocked with water and sports drinks which we bring to the scene from our firehouse.
On that day we did bring water and Gatorade from the firehouse, supplemented by additional supplies from the Nassau County Fire Marshal’s Rehab Unit. What we also had and received was an outpouring of support from the community. We received additional cases of water and sports drinks, boxes of mixed snacks and two stacks of pizza – all provided by the residents and businesses in town.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who provided these additional foodstuffs for us during a long, hot and labor intensive battle. To The Grand Healthcare, CVS Gussack Plaza, Rosa’s Pizzeria and La Bottega. To those who can’t be named individually. From the bottom of my heart and on behalf of the dedicated volunteer members of the Vigilant Fire Company and all the firefighters and EMS providers who responded to this incident from across our county, I say thank you. Knowing that we have your support means quite a lot.
Chief of Department
Vigilant Fire Company