Topics: Police, Fire And Harbormaster News

ORLEANS – The Orleans Fire Department is allowed to staff as many as five people per shift. More often than not, they get four. But Fire Chief Geof Deering reiterated to the select board recently that his department needs more staff. With seven fire personnel per shift, he said his department can avoid instances where the fire station is left unmanned, a scenario that's become more commonplace as the departmen...

CHATHAM – Building on successes in Harwich and Orleans, Town Manager Jill Goldsmith is seeking new ways to expand the reach of human services programs in town. As part of a package of more than 12 full-time positions she’s considering for the fiscal 2024 budget, Goldsmith has included four part-time seasonal community service officers to work with police, and one or two clinical social workers to help citizens of...

Residents Given More Time To Replace Fuel Tanks

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS – Those property owners who still need to replace their above-ground fuel storage tanks now have until March 1 to do so, otherwise they will face daily fines. The daily fines of $250 were due to kick in this month. But the board of health on Dec. 15 voted to push back the date in which the health department will begin issuing fines until March 1 in an effort to give both staff in the fire and health de...

ORLEANS – As another year draws to a close in Orleans, there's once again plenty to look back upon. In 2022, regional issues such as affordable housing and wastewater remained front of mind for town officials and residents. There was also some administrative shuffling in the Nauset Public Schools and Orleans Town Hall, some post-nor'easter blowback for Eversource, controversy over Rock Harbor parking and ongoi...

First Responders Pitch In For The Holidays

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM – Citizens know they can rely on the town’s first responders when there’s an emergency. But Chatham firefighters and police are also pitching in to help the community with food, toys and other essentials this holiday season. Holiday Groceries This week, Chatham firefighters will be assembling bags of groceries for a handful of local families, in partnership with an unnamed benefactor and Chatham Vill...

ORLEANS – Reports are in, but Orleans officials aren't anywhere closer to finding a site for a new fire station in town. The select board on Nov. 16 received recommendations from the town's new fire rescue station feasibility study committee as the committee's consultant, Kaestle Boos Architects, released its draft report outlining the town's options for locating a new station. The committee has been workin...

Tavano Named Chatham’s Next Fire Chief

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — On Dec. 1, Justin Tavano will become the youngest fire chief in recent memory in Chatham, possibly the youngest in the department’s history. But at 41, the Harwich native has impressive credentials, lots of experience and a passion for the fire service. “I feel well prepared,” he said. As deputy chief under current Chief David DePasquale, who is retiring, Tavano has been involved in all aspects of ru...

Fire Chief Says Eight Needed To Shore Up Staffing

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS – As demand for fire and EMS services continues to outstrip personnel in the fire department, the town's fire chief made his case last week for a needed boost in department staffing. Fire Chief Geof Deering told the select board Nov. 2 that the fire department needs eight new members to adequately address call volume that continues to increase, not only in Orleans but also at neighboring fire departmen...

ORLEANS – As more police departments are exploring the use of body cameras, the town's chief of police last week argued that it might be better for his department to wait a year. Citing the estimated $179,000 cost over five years for body and cruiser cameras and the accompanying software, Police Chief Scott MacDonald recommended to the select board Nov. 2 that the town take more time to do research into the ca...

Investigators Probe Fatal House Fire

By: Alan Pollock

WEST CHATHAM — State and local investigators are searching for the cause of a house fire that apparently claimed the life of a West Chatham man Monday. The Cape and Islands District Attorney’s Office identified the man as 50-year-old Jason A. Custodie, the owner of the house at 1369 Main St. Firefighters from several Lower Cape towns responded to the single-family home at the corner of Vineyard Avenue just ...

ORLEANS – Gathered outside the Orleans Fire Rescue headquarters last week, members of the department joined together to push Engine 175 into the station’s apparatus bay. The engine was fine. In fact, it’s brand new, and the Oct. 26 “push-in” ceremony was called to officially welcome the new vehicle into service. Town officials and residents gathered at the station to celebrate the new engine, w...

Man Dies In West Chatham House Fire

By: Staff Reports

WEST CHATHAM — A man recovered from a house fire on Main Street Monday afternoon has died, officials say. The Cape and Islands District Attorney’s Office has identified the man as 50-year-old Jason A. Custodie, the owner of the house.  Firefighters from several Lower Cape towns responded to the single-family home at 1369 Main St. just after 2 p.m. when a neighbor called 911 to report smoke coming from the b...

County Brings Firefighter Training To Orleans

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS – Normally members of the Orleans Fire Department have to go to Barnstable once a year for training. This year, the regional fire academy came to them. The department held live fire training at the site of the town's former public works headquarters on Bay Ridge Lane last week. The Barnstable County Fire Academy brought its 53-foot training trailer to the site for all of the department members to use. ...

New Ladder Truck Arrives At Harwich Fire Department

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH – T he fire department’s new quint ladder truck has arrived, and members of the department have been busy training and becoming familiar with the vehicle operations. Every member of the department must have 10 hours of training with the vehicle before it will be put into service, Fire Chief David LeBlanc said. The new ladder truck was built by Sutphen Corporation of Cincinnati, Ohio, and...

Towns Plan 9/11 Commemorations

By: Staff Reports

Local officials are inviting the public to attend Sunday’s events commemorating the 21st anniversary of the Sept. 11 terror attacks. Brewster Fire Department will host their commemoration at the fire station, 1671 Main St., on Sunday at 4 p.m. The memorial service will include music from bugler Jeff Mills and the Highland Light Bagpipe Band. The Chatham Fire-Rescue Department will hold a ceremony at the...

Crews Recover Remains Of Missing Boater

By: Staff Reports and Contributors

HARWICH PORT — Divers have recovered the body of a man believed to have fallen overboard at Saquatucket Harbor late Friday night or early Saturday morning. Rescuers were called to the harbor shortly before 4 a.m. to search for the man, who was last seen Friday night when he was headed for the harbor to prepare his boat for a family fishing trip Saturday. A brief search of the area led officials to believe that...