Platoon 4 had just finished the night shift; Platoon 2 was starting its second day of three. On this day before Easter Sunday 1991, the alarm came in right after 0800 roll call. Within minutes it went to a second, then third alarm.
Cmdr. (B/C) Tom Doherty was subbing for Platoon 2 Cmdr. Joe McDermott, who had taken ill on the job the previous day trick. Every career fire company in Hamden ended up at the fire, along with Volunteer Co. 8 and Cheshire's Haz-Mat unit, which re-filled SCBAs when the cascade system on Hamden's Rescue 3 ran dry.
Eight years earlier the entire top floor of another building in the complex was also destroyed by fire.
Shirley Manglertook lots of amazing action photos throughout the incident, many of which can be viewed by clicking the photo link further down this page.
The Hamden Chronicle, April 4, 1991 (Artiicle courtesy of Gil Spencer; photo by Shirley Mangler)
The owner of the brand new rack-bodied truck seen behind Engine 2 was very grateful to Lt. Clark Hurlburt for the rather unorthodox way he got that truck out of the building.
With fire impinging and eventually consuming much of the garage, the electric overhead door would not operate. Clark managed to get the truck started and drove it straight through the overhead door, saving the day for the truck and its owner.
Throughout history, some personnel have been known to do the same thing with fire apparatus.
Treadwell Office Park Fire - March 30, 1991
Box Alarm: Engine 2, Engine 1, Rescue 2, Truck 1 and Car 3
2nd Alarm: Engine 3, Engine 4, Rescue 1
3rd Alarm: Engine 5, Engine 9, Vol. Co. 8
Additional Units: Engine 8, Car 1, Car 5 (Marshal), Car 7 (Supt.), EMS Officer, CP 2 (Civil Preparedness), and Cheshire's Haz-Mat Unit; North Haven F.D. covered Station 3
E4 - reverse lay from 295 Treadwell to hydrant at Bagley and Treadwell
E9 - reverse lay from 295 Treadwell to hydrant at Dawes and Treadwell.
An avid photographer, Shirley Mangler is married to one of Hamden's longest serving career firefighters, Harold Mangler. From the mid-1980s until the 2000s, Shirley documented many Hamden Fire Department activities, including some notable fires and several memorable training sessions. Many of Shirley's photos have been published in local newspapers.
Helping us to "preserve our past," Shirley has generously donated a large number of her images to the HFRA archives to be shared with and enjoyed by devotees of the Hamden Fire Department and the fire service in general.
The photos Shirley took of the million dollar fire that struck the Treadwell Office Park in March 1991 are among her finest. Sixty-five of them are displayed in a slide show that can be viewed on a separate page by clicking on the photo below. Thank you, Shirley!
When 108 non-management department members opted to join the IAFF in early 1979, the names of these thirty original Local 2687 members were missing from the local's charter, issued March 19, 1979.
The reason for the omissions is not known, but this list corrects the record.
Rope Tricks Behind Station 3 - 1982
Ffs. Mike Ambriscoe and Carl Backus
Dep. Chief Training Officer John Tramontano
Ff. Brian Forsyth
The three photos above were among hundreds of slides donated to the HFRA several years ago by former Chief John Tramontano. When he was the department's training officer, Chief Tramontano began the practice of photographing various drills in detail. The resulting slide shows were used as training aids in future training sessions and for public education activities. These photos, taken in the rear parking area of Station 3 in the summer of 1982, show some of the younger members of Platoon 3 training in mountain rescue techniques.
Originally posted 12/31/10
Station 4 Alarm Room - October 31, 1981
When visiting the credit union in the town hall basement (remember?), retired Deputy Chiefs Joe Hromadka (in hat) and Ken Harrington often stopped in at Station 4. They are pictured here in the Alarm Room less than three weeks before fire dispatch operations were moved to the new Central Communications in the old Miller Library (now demolished). Ff. Jim Koutopolos is in the doorway at left.
In April 1942, Dep. Chief Hromadka became one of two shift commanders when the department was reorganized under career officers. He served until his 1972 retirement. Dep. Chief Ken Harrington joined the department in 1949. He was promoted to Lieutenant in 1963, Captain in 1970 and Deputy Chief Training Officer in 1974. He retired in 1980. Joe Hromadka passed away in 1986 and Ken Harrington two years later.