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A Community by the River

Public Safety


Do We Have an Emergency Plan?

The construction of the new Route 70 Bridge over the Manasquan River has impacted many of us, and it no doubt will continue to for some time to come. The sooner the work is finished the better for all of us, thus the importance of allowing the work to be completed as quickly as possible. At Council meetings, Route 70 has been identified an “evacuation route” on many occasions. Some have asked, “ Evacuation to where? How will we be notified? Do we have a plan?”

Again, I turned to Brielle’s Emergency Management Coordinator, Councilman Tim Shaak. The following is pretty much a reprint of the last interview when we dwelt primarily on hurricanes, but as we all know, emergencies can take many forms. But, be assured, Yes, we have a plan.

"In New Jersey the state police are responsible for emergency management. Each county and each municipality are also required by law to establish an Office of Emergency Management. Brielle's Office of Emergency Management is led by Councilman Tim Shaak as the Emergency Management Coordinator, and Police Chief Michael Palmer as the Deputy Coordinator. Each of these men has over 20 years experience in emergency services; Mr. Shaak with the Fire Company and Chief Palmer with the Police Department."

The Brielle Office of Emergency Management maintains and constantly updates its emergency operation plan. This plan is a 1,000 page document that plans for emergencies ranging from natural disasters to terrorist attacks and everything in between."

The interview continued:

How will residents be notified with special instructions or told to evacuate?

"The fire Department and Police will go door to door or street by street with a loud speaker. Also, local radio stations will carry the alert. The Borough's electronic sign at Borough Hall will be another means of communication."

How many emergency vehicles are available to be deployed?

"Fourteen in all; 3 fire engines, the fire chief's 4-wheel drive vehicle, the water rescue truck and a van; 4 patrol cars, the detective's car and the chief's 4-wheel drive vehicle; 2 ambulances.

What comprises the available manpower?

"Ready for duty on a 24/7 basis are 40 members of the Fire Department, 15 members of the First Aid Squad and 14 members of the Police Department."

If told to evacuate, where will residents be sent?

"The First Aid Building on Old Bridge Road has been designated as the #1 site because of its elevation and protection in a bowl-like setting. Brielle Elementary School has been designated as the #2 location. However, should there be instructions to leave the shore area, Routes 70, 34 and 195 would be likely evacuation routes."

If told to evacuate, what should residents take with them?

Time permitting, take important papers, cash and credit cards; a full tank of gas.

Can we take our pets with us?

If sent to a shelter, (listed above), the answer is no. Make advanced arrangements, where possible, to have them cared for.

What role will the Public Works play?

"All 13 men in the department will be on call 24/7, monitoring the water and sewer systems, keeping roads open, working with the utilities, (lines down, power out, etc). They will have the monumental task of clean up once the storm or disaster has passed. After the disaster seems to be over, the effects may last a long time."

Are we prepared?

Yes. Our Emergency Management Team is doing its part. There are steps we as individuals can take to prepare ourselves for times of crisis. They are listed on the Web at www.fema.gov. One of the benefits of living in a small town like Brielle is that our public safety personnel knows every square inch of it and knows most of us; and most of us know most of them and our neighbors. Feeling safer? Hope so. You should.


Do You Call 911 or 732-528-5050?

What's the Difference?

The Brielle community now has two ways to contact the police and we'd like to help you understand

which number to call when you have a problem. You should know that totally different dispatchers in the Monmouth County Dispatch System answer 911 calls and 732-528-5050 because each number has a different purpose. (Incidentally, the use of the Monmouth County facilities has saved the Brielle taxpayers many thousands of dollars.)

The 911 System was established to allow a simple yet effective means to obtain emergency assistance. The 911 system should be used only in an emergency such as fire or first aid calls, automobile accidents, or any event involving serious injuries. The dispatcher will ask your name, location and nature of the emergency and talk you through the situation while they dispatch a police officer and, if necessary, the fire department and/or the first aid squad.

Our police officers are the 911 first responders and usually respond in less than a minute after receiving a call. They have oxygen, defibrillators and fire extinguishers with them to provide immediate assistance until additional responders arrive. Many of our officers are also EMT trained.

In a non-emergency call the police on 732-528-5050. Some examples of non-emergencies would be suspicious vehicles or people in your neighbor hood, door-to-door solicitor's without a Brielle Solicitor's Permit, people apparently asleep on a lawn, downed trees, or non-functioning traffic signals.

The dispatchers will answer your call by saying, "Brielle Police". They will ask for your name and address and the nature of the problem. It is important that you are able to provide as much information as possible. Automobile descriptions, license plate numbers, the number of people involved and their descriptions are all important. The dispatcher will send an officer as quickly as possible. In rare cases, the police may be involved in more serious incidents and may not be able to respond immediately. They will, however, respond as quickly as possible.

Our Brielle Police Department prides itself in being a Community Policing Agency that provides many community services some of which the citizens may not be fully aware. You have undoubtedly heard about our D.A.R.E. program in both the fifth and eighth grades, but did you know that our officers also speak to community groups about personal and home safety as well as infant seat training for the proper use and installation of infant seats in automobiles? They also provide residential security surveys and firearm safety lessons when requested. During Brielle Day, you may have seen our officers utilizing the Identikit program, which involves voluntary fingerprinting and photos of children for parents to keep in their files in case they are ever needed.

Due to the complexity of modern law enforcement, all of our officers have a college degree and receive continuous training in all aspects of police work and public safety. Today, our Brielle Police Department is considered one of the finest in Monmouth County.

Please don't hesitate to call the police. We assure you, our officers will much rather be called to prevent a problem before it happens than to investigate an incident afterward.


911 OR 5050 – Still Confused?

Dial 911 for emergency assistance only: to report a fire, an accident, a burglary, an assault in progress or any serious crime, or to request emergency medical service. Be clear and concise with accurate information when you call.

Dial 732-528-5050 for a non-emergency situation: to speak with a Brielle Officer, to request information, to report stolen property or a lost pet, to report suspicious behavior or any matter you feel should be brought to the attention of our Police Department. Do not dial 911 for any of these situations.

If you have a matter or situation you’d like to discuss relative to the Police Department, Chief Michael Palmer will be happy to take your call. Dial 732-528-5050 and ask to speak to the chief.

Calls for both emergency and non-emergency assistance go through the Monmouth County Dispatch System. This shared service saves the Borough close to $200,000 a year.


Bicycle Safety

School is in session! Children will be riding their bikes and skateboards for transportation. That's a good thing. Let's make sure they know the rules of the road:

  • Keep to the right side of the road
  • Obey traffic signals, (they're not just for cars)
  • Keep lights and reflectors in working order
  • Use hand signals when turning
  • One person on a bike, unless a tandem
  • Be in control at all times

For your safety

  • Avoid biking when roads are slippery
  • Travel single file
  • Be alert and courteous
  • Use reflective markings on your clothing and bike
  • WEAR YOUR HELMET
  • And motorists, please slow down and be alert - children often aren't paying attention while having fun.

Congratulations New CERT Members

A group of 14 residents recently completed the Borough of Brielle's CERT training. This group was the third class to complete the training, bringing Brielle's CERT team to an impressive total of 65 members.

The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program helps train people to be better prepared to respond to an emergency situations in their communities. When emergencies occur, CERT members can give critical support to first responders, provide immediate assistance to victims and organize spontaneous volunteers at a disaster site. CERT members can also help improve the safety of the community.

The CERT program is taught by Councilman Tim Shaak and Sgt. Tom McWilliams of the Brielle Police Department. Both of these men have completed the CERT Train-the-Trainer course conducted by the New Jersey State Police. CERT training includes disaster preparedness, disaster fire suppression, basic disaster medical operations, and light search and rescue operations.

Over the next two years, the CERT program aims to double the number of participants, with over 400,000 individuals completing the 20 plus hours of training nation wide. Brielle boasts one of the largest CERTs in Monmouth County. Our team has been one of the most active in the state; they have appeared on national television, appeared in several public service announcements and have received numerous accolades from the New Jersey State Police.


How Prepared Are We in Brielle?

In the wake of the recent hurricanes in the Gulf region and the horrific and heart-wrenching images we saw days on end, you may wonder just HOW PREPARED ARE WE here in Brielle? I asked Councilman Tim Shaak, Emergency Management Coordinator. This is his reply.

"In New Jersey the state police are responsible for emergency management. Each county and each municipality are also required by law to establish an Office of Emergency Management. Brielle's Office of Emergency Management is led by Councilman Tim Shaak as the Emergency Management Coordinator, and Police Chief Michael Palmer as the Deputy Coordinator. Each of these men has over 20 years experience in emergency services; Mr. shaak with the Fire Company and Chief Palmer with the Police Department."

The Brielle Office of Emergency Management maintains and constantly updates its emergency operation plan. This plan is a 1,000 page document that plans for emergencies ranging from natural disasters to terrorist attacks and everything in between."

The interview continued:

How will residents be notified with special instructions or told to evacuate?

"The fire Department and Police will go door to door or street by street with a loud speaker. Also, local radio stations will carry the alert."

How many emergency vehicles are available to be deployed?

"Fourteen in all; 3 fire engines, the fire chief's 4-wheel drive vehicle, the water rescue truck and a van; 4 patrol cars, the detective's car and the chief's 4-wheel drive vehicle; 2 ambulances.

What comprises the available manpower?

"Ready for duty on a 24/7 basis are 40 members of the Fire Department, 15 members of the First Aid Squad and 14 members of the Police Department."

If told to evacuate, where will residents be sent?

"The First Aid Building on Oldbridge Road has been designated as the #1 site because of its elevation and protection in a bowl-like setting. Brielle Elementary School has been designated as the #2 location."

If told to evacuate, what should residents take with them?

Time permitting, take important papers, cash and credit cards; a full tank of gas.

Can we take our pets with us?

If sent to a shelter, (listed above), the answer is no. Make advanced arrangements, where possible, to have them cared for.

What role will the Public Works play?

"All 13 men in the department will be on call 24/7, monitoring the water and sewer systems, keeping roads open, working with the utilities, (lines down, power out, etc). They will have the monumental task of clean up once the storm or disaster has passed. After the disaster seems to be over, the effects may last a long time."

Are we prepared? Our Emergency management Team is doing its part. There are steps we can take to prepare ourselves for times of crisis. One of the benefits of living in a small town like Brielle is that our public safety personnel knows every square inch of it and they know most of us; and most of us know most of them and our neighbors. feeling safer? Hope so.


Hurricane Safety

The following information has been prepared by Police Chief Michael Palmer and Emergency Management Coordinator Tim Shaak.

Hurricane Watch: when a hurricane becomes a threat to coastal areas.

Hurricane Warning: when a hurricane has winds of 74 miles an hour or higher, or a combination of dangerously high water and very rough seas and is expected in a specific coastal area within 24 hours.

Preparation for a hurricane:

  • Keep tuned to a local radio or television station for the latest weather service advisories as well as special instructions from your local officials.
  • Check battery powered equipment. Your battery operated radio could be your only source of information, and flashlights will be needed if utility services are interrupted.
  • Keep your car fueled should evacuation be necessary. Service stations may be inoperable after the storm strikes.
  • Store drinking water in clean bathtubs, jugs, bottles and cooking pots since your town's water system may be contaminated or damaged by the storm.
  • Board up windows or protect them with shutters or tape. Although tape may not keep a window from breaking, it is an effective way of preventing flying glass.
  • Secure outdoor objects that might blow away. Garbage cans, garden tools, toys, signs, porch furniture and a number of other harmless items become deadly missiles in hurricane winds.
  • Moor your boat securely before the storm arrives, or move it to a designated safe area.
  • During the hurricane remain indoors if you live inland and away from low lying areas. However, if you are advised by your local officials to evacuate, DO SO IMMEDIATELY. You will be directed to a shelter provided for your safety.
  • Keep your radio on and listen to information regarding the location of the "eye" of the hurricane. If the center of the storm passes directly overhead there will be a lull in the wind, lasting from a few minutes to an hour or more, and then the other side of the "eye" will move in with the winds rapidly returning to hurricane force and will come in the opposite direction.
  • After the storm, beware of dangerous dangling wires and hazardous road conditions. If power has been shut off, check refrigerated food for spoilage and be suspicious of water that might be contaminated.

If you have any questions regarding hurricane safety or the Emergency Management Program in Brielle, please contact Police Chief Michael Palmer at 732-528-5050 or Councilman Tim Shaak at 732-528-1533.


Taking Steps to Prepare for Disaster

Although the borough's emergency management team continually works to make the residents safer, there are certain steps each resident can take to make their homes safer and to help themselves in time of crisis. These include:

  • Check and change the batteries in your smoke alarms and replace all alarms that are more then 10 years old.
  • Make sure you know where your local fire department, police station and hospital are and post a list of emergency phone numbers posted near all the telephones in your home.
  • Organize and practice a family fire drill. Make sure your children know what your smoke detector sounds like and what to do if it goes off when they are sleeping.
  • Locate the utility mains for your home and be sure you know how to turn them off manually; gas, electricity, and water.
  • Create an emergency plan for your household, including your pets. Decide where your family will meet if a disaster does happen: Right outside your home in case of a sudden emergency, like a fire and outside your neighborhood in case you can't return home. Ask an out of town friend to be your "family contact to relay messages.
  • Prepare a three day disaster supply kit, complete with flashlights, batteries, blankets, and an emergency supply of water and food, (and pet food).
  • Check the expiration dates of all over-the-counter medications-discard all that are expired and replace any that are routinely needed.
  • Make sure all cleaning products and dangerous objects are out of children's reach.
  • Plan to sign up for a first aid training course. Contact the Brielle Fist Aid Squad for the next course offering.
  • Join the Brielle CERT for additional training. Contact Tim Shaak at 732-528-7666 or 732-528-1533 for details.
  • Visit with your neighbors and discuss how you would handle a disaster in your area. Talk to neighbors with special needs and help them become safer too!

If you would like more information; or if you have additional questions regarding the Office of Emergency Management, please contact either Councilman Tim Shaak or Chief Michael Palmer.


Brielle OEM Receives Emergency Trailer

The Borough of Brielle recently was given a Homeland Security/CERT trailer by the New Jersey State Police. The trailer was one of only two awarded to Monmouth County communities; a total of twenty trailers were awarded statewide.

The trailer contains a variety of emergency and rescue equipment needed during a disaster. Some of the equipment include: emergency generator, portable lights, first aid equipment, backboards, shovels, emergency shelter, blankets, traffic cones, flashlights and triage equipment. The total value of the trailer and equipment is $7500. In addition, the Borough received a State grant for $1,270.89 for shelving and additional supplies.

The New Jersey State Police explained at a press conference held this summer that the reason Brielle was selected was two-fold. First, geographically it made sense to place this type of equipment in Southeastern Monmouth County, (the other one was placed in Middletown). And second, and more importantly, was Brielle's commitment to the CERT program, and its participation on several occasions when Brielle CERT was activated to assist local authorities.


Do You Call 911 or 732-528-5050?

What's the Difference?

The Brielle community now has two ways to contact the police and we'd like to help you understand

which number to call when you have a problem. You should know that totally different dispatchers in the Monmouth County Dispatch System answer 911 calls and 732-528-5050 because each number has a different purpose. (Incidentally, the use of the Monmouth County facilities has saved the Brielle taxpayers many thousands of dollars.)

The 911 System was established to allow a simple yet effective means to obtain emergency assistance. The 911 system should be used only in an emergency such as fire or first aid calls, automobile accidents, or any event involving serious injuries. The dispatcher will ask your name, location and nature of the emergency and talk you through the situation while they dispatch a police officer and, if necessary, the fire department and/or the first aid squad.

Our police officers are the 911 first responders and usually respond in less than a minute after receiving a call. They have oxygen, defibrillators and fire extinguishers with them to provide immediate assistance until additional responders arrive. Many of our officers are also EMT trained.

In a non-emergency call the police on 732-528-5050. Some examples of non-emergencies would be suspicious vehicles or people in your neighbor hood, door-to-door solicitor's without a Brielle Solicitor's Permit, people apparently asleep on a lawn, downed trees, or non-functioning traffic signals.

The dispatchers will answer your call by saying, "Brielle Police". They will ask for your name and address and the nature of the problem. It is important that you are able to provide as much information as possible. Automobile descriptions, license plate numbers, the number of people involved and their descriptions are all important. The dispatcher will send an officer as quickly as possible. In rare cases, the police may be involved in more serious incidents and may not be able to respond immediately. They will, however, respond as quickly as possible.

Our Brielle Police Department prides itself in being a Community Policing Agency that provides many community services some of which the citizens may not be fully aware. You have undoubtedly heard about our D.A.R.E. program in both the fifth and eighth grades, but did you know that our officers also speak to community groups about personal and home safety as well as infant seat training for the proper use and installation of infant seats in automobiles? They also provide residential security surveys and firearm safety lessons when requested. During Brielle Day, you may have seen our officers utilizing the Identikit program, which involves voluntary fingerprinting and photos of children for parents to keep in their files in case they are ever needed.

Due to the complexity of modern law enforcement, all of our officers have a college degree and receive continuous training in all aspects of police work and public safety. Today, our Brielle Police Department is considered one of the finest in Monmouth County.

Please don't hesitate to call the police. We assure you, our officers will much rather be called to prevent a problem before it happens than to investigate an incident afterward.


Safety Tips from your Police Department
  1. NEVER LEAVE A DOOR KEY UNDER THE DOOR MAT. THIS IS THE FIRST PLACE A BURGLAR LOOKS.
  2. NEVER LEAVE A NOTE ON THE DOOR ANNOUNCING YOU'RE NOT HOME.
  3. NEVER LEAVE A MESSAGE ON YOUR ANSWERING MACHINE STATING THAT YOU ARE NOT HOME. HAVE THE MESSAGE STATE THAT YOU CANNOT COME TO THE PHONE AT THIS TIME.
  4. MAKE SURE DEADBOLT TYPE LOCKS ARE INSTALLED AND USED ON ALL OUTSIDE DOORS.
  5. USE EXTERIOR LIGHTING TO ILLUMINATE ALL EXTERIOR ENTRIES.
  6. LOCK AND PIN (IF POSSIBLE) ALL FIRST FLOOR WINDOWS.
  7. TELL YOUR NEIGHBORS WHEN YOU ARE LEAVING ON VACATION. THEY ARE THE EYES AND EARS OF YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD.
  8. IF YOU ARE GOING ON VACATION FOR AN EXTENDED PERIOD OF TIME, HAVE A NEIGHBOR OR FRIEND PICK UP YOUR MAIL AND NEWSPAPERS. YOU CAN ALSO HAVE YOUR MAIL STOPPED AT THE POST OFFICE AND TELL YOUR NEWSPAPER DELIVERY PERSON. THEY WILL HOLD YOUR PAPERS UNTIL YOU RETURN.
  9. USE AN INTERIOR LIGHT TIMER IN YOUR HOME SO THAT LIGHTS AND RADIOS WILL COME ON AT DIFFERENT TIMES OF THE NIGHT. THIS WILL GIVE THE ILLUSION THAT SOMEONE MIGHT BE HOME.
  10. IF YOUR HOME DOES HAVE AN ALARM, MAKE SURE YOU HAVE AN EMERGENCY CONTACT PERSON WHO CAN GAIN ACCESS INTO YOUR HOME.
  11. LET THE POLICE DEPARTMENT KNOW WHEN YOU ARE LEAVING, WHERE YOU ARE STAYING AND HOW TO CONTACT YOU IF NEED BE. ALSO TELL THEM WHICH VEHICLES WILL BE IN YOUR DRIVEWAY

Guard Against Attack in and Around Your Car

  • Park in well lit areas
  • Safety in numbers - Walk with others
  • Have your keys ready
  • As you approach your car, look underneath it, if possible
  • Look around your car for people sitting in cars next to yours
  • Look inside before opening your door
  • Carry your pocketbook tucked in at your side with flap facing in, if it is that style
  • Carry a pepper gas container, only if you are comfortable with it. (It can be used against you)
  • At the very least, carry a whistle or sound device
  • Don't carry alot of cash or wear alot of jewelry - it makes you a target
  • Take pictures of your jewelry and mark your valuables
  • Keep a list of credit card numbers

When Driving Home

  • Make sure your family knows your usual route
  • Let someone know if you have any other stops to make
  • If you feel you are being followed, DON'T drive home. Drive to a police department or a store with a phone and call police
  • Honk your horn and flash your lights
  • Try to get a vehicle description and plate number
  • If you break down, turn your flashers on and raise your hood if you can
  • If someone stops to help, DON'T get out of your car. Crack your window slightly to talk
  • Ask them to stop at a phone and call for help
  • Learn how to change a tire

At Work

  • Place pocketbooks and other valuables out of sight
  • If a robbery occurs - Give it up. Nothing is worth your life
  • Get a good description. Call police as soon as robber leaves
  • Don't touch anything he or she may have touched
  • Never leave back doors open
  • If you have to empty garbage into a dumpster after dark, don't do it alone
  • If a customer looks like he/she is getting out of control, have a co-worker call the police
  • Use common sense and rely on your instincts

GOING AWAY?

Let our Police Department know. Pick up a form detailing where you'll be, whom to contact in case of emergency, what vehicles will remain on your property. Don't forget to stop mail and newspaper deliveries. Have a neighbor collect any unexpected deliveries from your property. Leave no tell-tale signs that you are away. The "Closed Home" form can also be accessed and filled out online on the Brielle Police web page. After filling out the form, print it out and drop it off at the Brielle Police Station.

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