Clean up in Irondequoit has begun, after a fire badly damaged the Department of Public Works on Christmas Eve.
Town Supervisor Dave Seeley said the cost of the damage is adding up, but are hopeful insurance will cover everything lost.
“I intend there to be very little impact to the tax payers, if any,” Supervisor Seeley said.
Seeley said the cause of the fire has not be determined, but estimates the damage is in the multi-millions.
“There was well over a million dollars in vehicles lost, not to mention the equipment and the building lost,” Seeley said.
On Saturday night, a large fire broke out at the Irondequoit Department of Public Works garage, seriously damaging the garage and destroying 8-10 of their town vehicles.
Irondequoit Town Supervisor David Seeley tells News 8 that the entire eastern wing of the building will be a total loss.
Seeley also said that of the 8-10 vehicles damaged, 3-4 were plow vehicles and the rest were sanitation and sewer vehicles. These vehicles are estimated to be worth $50,000 and $400,000 and make up a quarter of their fleet.
Seeley said he has been in touch with Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo about possibly sharing vehicles while the Town of Irondequoit works to replace those that they lost.
Seeley said the Town has insurance and are hopeful that most of the damage will be covered.
The Town Supervisor released the following statement on the Christmas Eve blaze:
“Last night, at approximately 10:30 the Point Pleasant Fire Department responded to a working fire at the southeast corner of the Town of Irondequoit Department of Public Works garage, located on the Town Hall campus. Within an hour, the fire had spread to much of the eastern portion of the building. By early morning, the fire was declared under control.
This section of the garage was built 86 years ago, and thus, presented significant challenges to fire fighters. All five of Irondequoit’s Fire Departments, as well as several departments outside of Irondequoit, assisted with suppressing the fire. At some points, there were well over 100 fire fighters on the scene. I will note that many of the volunteer fire fighters who responded to the scene are members of the Town’s Department of Public Works, helping save much of the building where they proudly work and equipment they use every day.
On behalf of Town residents, I would like to thank the brave men and women from throughout the county who answered the call of duty on this Christmas holiday. Public service should always be valued. However, the bravery I witnessed demonstrated the most powerful devotion to community.
The damaged incurred by this fire will likely exceed several million dollars. In addition to losing much to the DPW mechanic’s garage and operations center, several vehicles of the DPW fleet – roughly one quarter – are likely lost. In particular, we did incur substantial loss to our sewer and sanitation fleet. The Town does insure its assets, and will proceed with a claims process.
I have immediately begun discussions with my senior staff regarding ensuring continuity of vital government services. This fire comes just four days after the official start of winter. We sustained considerable loses to our snow and ice removal fleet and much of our dispatch center has been damaged beyond repair. We do have contingencies for events like this, with Camp Eastman serving as an alternative facility. I have spoken to County Executive Dinolfo and leaders of other Towns who have offered assistance to the Town. I thank them, in advance, on behalf of our residents.
The men and women of our Department of Public Works are committed to keeping our roads safe and infrastructure secure, despite the circumstances. Therefore, it is incumbent on the Town leadership to allow them to continue to perform their jobs when they show up to work Tuesday morning. In the short-term, all service calls to DPW should be made to 336-6033.
At present, we are working to stabilize the structure, and remove debris from the building. At the recommendation of our Fire Marshall, I would like to strongly advise residents stay away from the building, as it is unsafe. Our goal is to demolish it in an expedient manner, but until then, it should be considered dangerous and unstable.
At present, the site next to Town Hall is one of destruction. Ironically, the fire occurred just across the parking lot from our new town Library, opened last year. I am confident that the Town will emerge stronger from this temporary setback, and that the loss of brick and mortar will not thwart our collective will to make our community stronger.”