November 10, 2011
The Vermont Agency of Transportation (VTrans) today closed its Dummerston Region Incident Command Center, the last of three temporary headquarters established following Tropical Storm Irene to coordinate emergency road and bridge repairs.
The Dummerston command center, which covered 56 towns in the state’s southeast region, was critical to restoring mobility along Vermont’s storm-damaged state highway network. Leadership for all remaining Irene-related roadwork has been transitioned to VTrans’ main office in Montpelier.
“It is impossible to put into words how much the Dummerston team has done for Vermont,” said VTrans Secretary Brian Searles. “The vast majority of the state highway system has been repaired and is now ready for winter in large part due to the dedication and sacrifice of the many public and private employees who were stationed in Dummerston.”
For more than two months, the Dummerston ICC was home base to more than 200 VTrans employees as well as hundreds of National Guard members and contract employees. In total, more than 1,000 highway-recovery personnel were mobilized through the command center to help rebuild bridges and roads as far north as Roxbury and as far south as Brattleboro.
Immediately following Irene, VTrans assembled three incident command centers: one located in Dummerston to oversee all activity in Vermont’s southeast region, one in Rutland to oversee southwest Vermont, and one in Berlin to command all Irene-related activity to the north. The Berlin and Rutland ICCs both closed in October.
The Dummerston ICC was charged with repairing some of Irene’s worst roadway and bridge damage. Significant accomplishments include reconnecting all isolated communities within just days following the storm, and then reestablishing heavily damaged, critical travel corridors like Route 4 through Woodstock, Route 30 through Jamaica, Route 131 through Cavendish and many sections of Route 100, including erecting a temporary bridge over the White River reconnecting Route 73 to Route 100.
“Everyone associated with the Dummerston ICC took part in the challenge and experience of a lifetime,” said Joe Flynn, Dummerston’s incident commander. “Road and bridge repairs initially believed to need months were accomplished in just weeks because of the unwavering determination by all who were involved in what became a very tight-knit group of extremely dedicated professionals who worked incredibly long hours to get the job done as quickly as possible.”
Closing the Dummerston ICC signals Vermont’s initial Irene emergency response is almost complete but full recovery will take years in some instances. While challenges still remain along Route 12A in Roxbury, Route 73 in Rochester, Route 106 in Weathersfield, and along Route 107 between Bethel and Stockbridge, repairs in these locations are far enough along that their command functions can be seamlessly transferred to VTrans’ main office in Montpelier.
Irene struck on August 28, 2011 and severely damaged more than 500 miles of state highway, including some 200 state bridges. Today, only 2 bridge locations remains closed, and all but 18 miles of state roadway are open to public travel.
Questions regarding storm-damaged roads and bridges related to Tropical Storm Irene can be answered by calling VTrans’ Irene Storm Center at 1-800-Vermont. People can also visit VTrans’ website at www.aot.state.vt.us where they can sign up for travel updates for their mobile phone, and follow the agency’s progress on both Facebook and Twitter.
Source: Office of the Governor
Last Updated at: November 10, 2011 08:59:15