Category 10 Winds, Along with Intense Squall and Thunderstorms, Create Instant Chaos Across West Essex Tuesday
by Carolyne Volpe Curley / Carolyne@WestEssexNOW.com
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WEST ESSEX, NJ - Late Tuesday afternoon, West Essex was slammed with a storm so strong that many have questioned if we had a tornado come through the area.
While some areas of New York did see tornados touch down, West Essex experienced a brief, but incredibly powerful, Squall with Whole Gale, Category 10, 66mph Winds, which was followed up by equally damaging Thunderstorms.
The violently intense onset was reported by NOAA's Fairfield Weather Station as a Squall - which they define as a "sudden violent gust of wind or a localized storm" - and it began in West Essex at 4:44pm, followed by Thunderstorms which continued until 6:01pm.
In this very short period of time, the Winds, Lightning, and Rain caused a huge amount of damage around the West Essex area.
What follows is a timeline of incidents chronicled as they were reported (not as they occured) to which Police, Fire and DPW crews responded and worked tirelessly to clean up for days:
Tuesday, May 15
Police begin welfare checks of residences, including homes where children are on their own.
Roseland: Eagle Rock Avenue, Methodist Church
By the end of the Storm, over 90 streets which included hundreds of residents, were without power:
West Caldwell Police, with the Assistance of Mutual Aid, Arrest Two after Friday Morning Crash of Stolen Van and Manhunt
by Carolyne Volpe Curley / Carolyne@WestEssexNOW.com
WEST CALDWELL, NJ - At about 10:18am this morning, West Caldwell Police received notification of a van onto a property on Passaic Avenue near, Lombard Drive.
When patrol officers responded to the location, they discovered the van had hit a retaining wall alongside the driveway. Investigators ascertained that two individuals had run from the van and headed west into the wooded area behind Crane's Mill.
The owner of the Contracting company was immediately contacted by the police. Soon police determined that the plate on the Van came back stolen out of Paterson. Mutual Aid was requested from Roseland and Caldwell Police Departments.
At 10:23am, a resident on Hasemann Court notified police that they saw two individuals in their yard.
As a precautionary measure, at 10:27am, students at the nearby Wilson School and James Caldwell High School were placed on a "Shelter in Place" order . Police set up a perimeter search around the area as they set out to locate the two individuals.
Investigating police soon determined that the suspects likely broke a fence on Pine Tree Place and residents on the street reported seeing the suspects looking into cars.
At 10:30am, police followed a lead that the two individuals were seen in the Knoll Terrace area running southeast towards Harrison Avenue. Officers from Fairfield Police responded at 10:35am, to search the wooded areas.
A resident on Ellis Road reported at 10:41am that they were viewing two individuals hiding underneath the deck of a home on Brian Road. Police immediately responded to the area and observed the individuals near a home on Brian Road; and one was quickly taken into custody.
The other male, who was seen in the distance running west in the backyards of Brian Road towards Passaic Avenue, was pursued by the officers. At 10:49am, the individual was next seen by Fairfield Police near Pine Tree Place at Passaic Avenue.
An Essex County Sherif K-9 unit responded to the area at 10:53am and began tracking the individual starting in the vicinity of the crashed van.
Slightly more than one hour after the pursuit of the two individuals began, the second suspect was taken into custody at 11:08am on Brian Road, near Passaic Avenue.
The Shelter in Place order was removed from the area schools after notification that the police investigation had concluded.
No further information, including charges, is available at this time.
by Carolyne Volpe Curley / Carolyne@WestEssexNOW.com
NORTH CALDWELL, NJ - On Wednesday afternoon, reports began circling around West Essex High School that a student was set to pull-off a possibly dangerous violent act tomorrow at the school's Pep Rally. According to North Caldwell Police Chief Mark Deuer, his department immediately began an investigation which ultimately concluded that the threat was unfounded.
In an interview with West Essex Now, Deuer described that he and his officers worked through the night and into this morning investigating students, their families, their homes and additionally had three K-9 dogs searching the school's lockers for any and all weapons. A full team of officers were in place this morning at the school for student arrivals, will be there during after-school departures and and will be on hand tomorrow at the Pep Rally.
"After a long and exhuastive investigation,
Assisting North Caldwell in the investigation were officers from the Essex Fells Police, Fairfield Police and Roseland Police departments and members of the Essex County Sheriffs Office.
North Caldwell Police Department
Police Chief Mark Deuer
136 Gould Avenue
North Caldwell, NJ 07006
ROSELAND, NJ - William Siudmak, 56, of Roseland, was sentenced today to 17 years in New Jersey State Prison after having been found guilty of aggravated sexual assault and other crimes against a young girl. Sidumak was arrested for the crime in March, 2014 and the crimes are alleged to have occurred against a child betweenJanuary 2006, and December 2007.
According to Essex County Assistant Prosecutor Kelly Sandler, who handled the case, on June 2, Siudmak pled guilty to the following:
Siudmak was sentenced to 17 years by Essex County Superior Court Judge Alfonse J. Cifelli. Under the No Early Release Act, Siudmak must serve 85 percent of his 17-year sentence before he will become eligible for parole.
“Thanks to the courage of the victim in this case,
The investigation into this case was a joint investigation between the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, the Warren County Prosecutor’s Office, the New Jersey State Police and the Roseland Police Department.
ROSELAND, NJ - Further information has been released from Roseland Police Department Chief Richard McDonough regarding Tuesday's arrest of two males in Millburn after a police chase which originated in Roseland.
McDonough explained that the incident began at about 4:40am Tuesday morning when Patrolman Martin Gutierrez was patrolling Eagle Rock Avenue near Locust Avenue and came upon a vehicle which he deemed suspicious. While continuing to follow the blue Chevy Monte Carlo, Gutierrez ran the plate and found that the car had been reported
stolen out of East Orange.
Without stopping for Gutierrez, the 16-years old male driver of the car, and his 21-years old male passenger led the officer on a high-speed chase which led up Livingston Avenue, onto JFK Parkway and into Millburn. The patrolman put out a call to his local law enforcement members in Livingston and Millburn and eventually, after the Chevy's front tire got blown out, the suspects made their way to the area of Parsonage Hill Road near JFK Parkway in Short Hills, left the car behind and took off into the wooded area.
Roseland, Livingston and Millburn Police were joined by the Essex County Sheriff's K9 unit and a NJ State Police Helicopter as they all searched the area, doing sweeps of the ground by car and on foot for the suspects and any possibly-tossed weapons.
Eventually, a member of Millburn Police located the two suspects and Gutierez placed them under arrest and brought them back to Roseland for processing.
Charges, Bail, Incarceration
The two men, both of Newark, were charged with the following:
McDonough expressed that he wished to thank the members of the Livingston and Millburn Police for their assistance.
ROSELAND, NJ - Two males are now under arrest after a police chase which stretched from Roseland to Millburn early Tuesday morning. The incident began at about 5am this morning and Roseland Police Department Chief Richard McDonough confirmed that the department does have two males in custody. No other information has been confirmed at this time, but will be updated as information is released.
Reports came in early Tuesday morning of Roseland and Livingston police pursuing two African-American males in a blue Chevy Monte Carlo. The chase led up Livingston Avenue, to JFK Parkway and into Millburn. The Chevy's front tire eventually got blown out as the suspects made their way to the area of Parsonage Hill Road near JFK Parkway in Short Hills.
Reportedly, the men decided to leave the car and took off into the wooded area, which is close to a reservoir. It was unclear if they get rid of guns or were possibly armed. K9 units and the NJ State Police Helicopter were called in to assist with the search.
As Millburn Police were called to the scene, Roseland and Livingston police continued to search the area, doing sweeps of the ground by car and on foot for the suspects and a possibly-tossed weapon.
Eventually, with the assistance of Millburn Police, two suspects were arrested.
WEST ESSEX, NJ - Late Saturday night, the National Weather Service issued a Freezing Rain Advisory for northeast New Jersey warning of hazardous travel conditions through Sunday morning. The Advisory was expected to be in effect from 3am until 8am Sunday morning, but it was gradually extended until 1pm Sunday afternoon.
"Light freezing rain and drizzle will make
Reports began to come into West Essex Now by early morning saying the roads were extremely hazardous.
"Black ice everywhere from Bloomfield to West Caldwell.
By 8:30am, about 10 vehicles were already disabled along Mountain Avenue and there were numerous accidents occurring throughout the area. Area police and surrounding towns used their emergency alert systems within the next ten minutes to warn their residents to remain at home and they would continue to do so throughout the morning.
Over the next hour, Eagle Rock Avenue, Bloomfield Avenue, Passaic Avenue, Eisenhower Parkway and Route 280 were all closed completely or intermittently as accidents arose. Vehicles were reported to have collided into each other, hit poles, gone onto lawns and spun around onto oncoming traffic. There were countless injuries and multiple airbags deployed; in general, drivers were proving it was unsafe for any but emergency vehicles to be out on the road.
Pedestrians were equally affected; falls with injuries from icy stairs, sidewalks, parking lots and driveways were reported all over the area.
So many accidents happened in such a short period of time that First Responders resorted to the rare practice of "triaging" - which usually happens during extreme emergencies when large amounts of wounded or ill patients are assigned degrees of urgency. By 9am, Roseland and West Essex First Aid EMTs were responding to emergencies all over the area, while at the same time their emergency vehicles were attempting to circumvent the dangerous roads to transport patients to local hospitals and trauma centers in Newark. All available EMTs were asked to report for duty and mutual aid from Wayne was also requested.
This is only a sampling of accidents which occurred throughout the region:
Reports of abandoned cars left where they had crashed came in from all over. By 11:30am, there were so many accidents and disabled vehicles along Eagle Rock Avenue that residents were opening their homes to shelter people as they waited for assistance.
Local religious organizations including St. Peter's Church in Essex Fells, LifeSource Church in West Caldwell and Our Lady of the Lake in Verona canceled morning prayer services or afternoon gatherings.
The ice storm affected everyone in the Metropolitan Area. Governor Chris Christie announced that speed restrictions of 35-45mph were in effect on the NJ Turnpike by 9:15am. NJ Transit and DeCamp buses were all cancelled until the afternoon due to the icy road conditions. At 1:30pm, the mutual aid agreement between New York City and NJ was activated and those EMT teams, which were available, waited at the Hudson Tunnel to assist with the City's backlog of 911 calls.
At 1pm, the Freezing Rain Advisory was cancelled while NOAA then issued a Flood Warning which was in effect until 6pm Sunday afternoon. Briefly, thundershowers came into the area adding to the day's weather challenges.
All the roads in the area were open by 1:45pm. The roads remain wet and temperatures will continue below freezing tonight. At 5:50pm, there was an accident, with injuries, on Grandview Avenue, in North Caldwell.
Fairfield Officer Frank Tracey Arrests East Orange Teen for Car Theft After Crash and Foot Chase through Roseland Wooded Areas Early Monday Morning
ROSELAND, NJ - Early Monday morning, West Essex area police participated in a combined effort to catch a suspect wanted for stealing a car in Parsippany. It began around 1:15am when the NJ State Police announced that two cars had been stolen out of Parsippany; a car matching one of the descriptions was found crashed and abandoned in Roseland near the Route 280 / Eisenhower Parkway ramp.
Roseland officers alerted the State Police that the car had been found and began a foot pursuit of a suspect who was believed to be dressed in dark clothing. As officers canvassed the wooded area, mutual aid was requested from police of the area towns including East Hanover, Essex Fells, Fairfield, North Caldwell and West Caldwell.
Officers from West Caldwell were searching the streets and wooded areas of Passaic Avenue while the other towns centered on the backyards and woods near Cooper Avenue, Glen Avenue and all around Pitcairn Drive. By 1:52am, an Essex County Sheriff's Office canine unit had arrived to assist with the search.
During this time period, Fairfield Police Officer Frank Tracey was patrolling the streets along Passaic Avenue. According to Fairfield Officer in Charge Anthony Manna, Tracey came across a gold colored Ford Explorer, coming out of the Stonegate condos.
"Officer Tracey observed that the vehicle was occupied
After Tracey located the suspects at about 2:20am, officers from West Caldwell arrived to assist. The occupant of the backseat was arrested and turned out to be a teen, 17-years old, out of East Orange. The Parsippany Police responded to the scene to investigate further and by 2:50am, all units had cleared the scene.
Begins Today: Caldwell, Essex Fells, Fairfield, North Caldwell and West Caldwell Police to Participate in “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” Aug. 15 to Sept. 1
CALDWELL, NJ - Area police will be participating in the 2014 Labor Day “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” national campaign which begins today. Caldwell Police Chief James H. Bongiorno, Essex Fells Police Chief Vincent Kulik, Fairfield Deputy Chief Anthony Manna, North Caldwell Police Chief Mark Deuer and West Caldwell Police Chief Michael J. Bramhall all confirmed that their agencies will take part in the coordinated effort with other local and state law enforcement agencies, to crack down on drunk drivers. Each group on their own will conduct sobriety checkpoints and roving patrols looking for motorists who may be driving while intoxicated. Little Falls Police will be taking part in the campaign as well.
From Friday, Aug. 15 through Monday, Sept. 1, “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” is designed to raise awareness about the dangers of drinking and driving through high-visibility enforcement and public education tools, including posters, banners and mobile video display signs. Launched across the U.S. in 1999, the program works to combat drunk driving during the busy summer travel season, including the Labor Day holiday period.
In 2013, alcohol-impaired fatalities accounted for 22 percent of New Jersey’s motor vehicle fatalities. The 2013 Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Crackdown resulted in:
WEST ESSEX AREA POLICE
Law enforcement agencies from around West Essex reported the following results during the 2013 campaign:
In New Jersey, a person is guilty of drunk driving if they operate a motor vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC - the amount of alcohol the bloodstream) of 0.08 percent or greater. Although the law refers to a 0.08 percent BAC, you can be convicted of driving while under the influence of intoxicating liquor even when your BAC is below 0.08 percent. Consuming even small amounts of alcohol dulls the senses, decreases reaction time, and hampers judgement, vision and alertness. If you consume any amount of alcohol and your driving is negatively impacted, you can be convicted of drunk driving.
Driving under the Influence Penalties
1st Offense - BAC: 0.08 percent or higher, but less than 0.10 percent
All offenses also carry:
Refusal to Submit to Breath Test Penalty
Possessing an Open Container Penalty
If occurring within a school zone, some of the above penalties are increased.
“More than 10,000 people are killed in the United States each year
The Division of Highway Traffic Safety offers the following advice: