"Fire-rescue a concern with bridge closing"
_FLORIDA TODAY_ - Jun 5, 2004
'MERRITT ISLAND-- Six months without use of Mathers Bridge, starting in
January, will be inconvenient for residents, business operators and
exercise enthusiasts who use South Tropical Trail on a daily basis. But
fire-rescue people say inconvenience is only a small portion of their
'The new year heralds the beginning of an anticipated six-month closure
of Mathers Bridge, one of two entrances to South Merritt Island, so the
bridge can receive $6 million in renovations. "It's awful and
terrible," said Janet Bonder who has owned a home there since 1971.
"The closure will have big impact on all our lives here."'
'Bonder knows bridge renovations are necessary, but she believes the
six-month timeline is about two months too long. "We could hold our
breath and deal with it for three or four months, but six months is too
much," Bonder said. Bruce Auchter, an engineer with Brevard County,
said a four-month timeline is unlikely because it would mean overtime
costs and noise that would affect residents at night and on weekends.'
'Dennis Neterer, assistant chief of operations for Brevard County
Fire-Rescue, said residents should know the department is formulating
plans to avoid any potential safety problem the closure might cause.'
'He said Station 63 on State Road A1A in postal Indialantic serves South
Merritt Island with a response time of under 4 minutes. With the bridge
closed, jurisdiction would shift to Station 62, which would use Pineda
Causeway, taking response time up to 12 minutes.'
'"So you see the challenge we have," Neterer said. "However, we will
overcome it by implementing some new options." First, they are in the
process of looking to purchase a boat that would be stationed by the
bridge allowing rescue workers from Station 63 a way to cross the river
and to access South Tropical Trail.'
'A fire truck or rescue truck would be parked across the bridge on South
Tropical Trail in a fenced area. "Fire rescue would just hop on the
boat and then get in the truck and go," Neterer said. "It won't be as
fast as with the bridge open, but it will be quicker than coming from
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06-07-2004, 01:07 PM #1
Yeah, but who'll be the coxswain?IACOJ Canine Officer
06-07-2004, 04:01 PM #2
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06-07-2004, 08:48 PM #3
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