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Canton Still Dealing With Irene-Related Issues

Propane leak reported and bridge on Shagbark Lane damaged.

As the town scrambles to clean up after Irene, emergency crews are still dealing with several issues.

On Memorial Field on Powder Mill Road, which was heavily flooded during the storm, the town of Canton Volunteer Fire and EMS Department responded to a reported propane leak this morning. Shortly before 1 p.m., firefighters had cleared the scene and were back to work on other water-related issues, pumping water out of numerous basements, including some on Torrington Avenue, Powder Mill Road and several in North Canton.

Some portions of roads also remain closed, including Torrington Avenue between Erickson Drive and Town Bridge Road, where several trees are down, including some on electrical wires.

In addition, the town was dealing with a damaged bridge on Shagbark Lane. The storm blew out the roadway and town officials now believe a damaged abutment have made it unsafe to drive over.

Although a private lane, the town was looking to at least initially repair an area immediately before the bridge so town vehicles could at least get that far in the event of an emergency.

"It think it's important, we at least provide emergency access," First Selectman Richard Barlow said.

As other residents deal with downed limbs and some with flooded homes, the town has decided to open the transfer station, which is normally closed Mondays.

Although the fire department had to closed Powder Mill Road this morning, Ramp Road is now open so people can access the station until 3:30 p.m.

This week, the town is allowing residents to dispose - free of charge - storm related bulky waste and brush, Barlow said.

A sticker or proof of residency is required.

Also Monday morning, the fire department continued evaluating potentially flooded homes and other issues in addition to responding to the propane situation.

It's been a busy storm for firefighters, who reported to their respective fire stations Saturday night and began responding to calls around 4 a.m. Sunday.

Public Works crews came in about 3 a.m. and worked with fiefighters, EMTs and police on storm-related emergencies.

Storm related problems included downed wires and trees, flooding, a mattress fire and water over roadways.

"I think the Fire and EMS, Police and Public Works departments did an outstanding job and showed their level of expertise — particularly the fire and ems staff, which are volunteers," Barlow said.

Power outage numbers continue to fluctuate based on reporting but as of 11:30, Connecticut Light and Power reported 609 or 12 percent of its 4,929 customers in Canton without power.

Kelly August 29, 2011 at 04:21 PM
Thank you for providing excellent coverage. All of us who live on Powder Mill Road are without power and had extensive flooding.
Christine Benoit August 29, 2011 at 04:51 PM
Those folks on Torrington Ave stuck between Erickson and Town Bridge have no way to get in or out unless its on foot - how should people report that emergency access as cut off? The power company isn't as concerned with access issues.
John Fitts (Editor) August 29, 2011 at 08:22 PM
Hi Christine. I don't have a good answer for you on the reporting but will try to get one. I did get out there to take some photos and have added them. Thanks to everyone for the updates.
Kristen Stevens August 30, 2011 at 01:49 AM
Is the access road for the McMansions (don't know what else to call them) on the top of Freedom Drive still the dirt road between the reservoir and the original homes there, that is NEVER maintained? The town thought this was an acceptable route when they were being built even though numerous photographic evidence provided by a local professional photographer illustrated otherwise. How would they get out now if necessary or emergency people get in?
Kristen Stevens August 30, 2011 at 01:55 AM
By the way, great coverage John. Nice job. :)
Heather Bicking August 30, 2011 at 07:10 PM
The access road for both Freedom drive and Sweetheart Mountain (that is the name of the "McMansion" development as you called it) does runs along the back side of Freedom Drive and seems to be a maintained dirt road, as it is MDC property and they are constantly using it to access the damn and patrol the MDC property. There is an gate that is within the new development for any emergencies in that area.
Kristen Stevens August 30, 2011 at 11:51 PM
Unfortunately you are incorrect Heather. There is no access for Freedom Drive residents or Sweetheart Mountain. The "emergency road" is barely passable at best, during the winter it is not plowed at all. During the storm where we had with two feet of snow this past winter I don't see how an ambulance, fire truck or police car could get to them. The "McMansion" comment was made in humor. We nicknamed it that after Canton's locals went to the town meetings to protest it. It was meant purely for humor and I was so tired from cleaning out the basement (not from flooding) that I clearly did not get that across better, or my original thought. lol

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