“Are You Ready” 2016-2017 Edition Putnam County Indian Point Emergency Guide

Take a look at our latest Indian Point Emergency Guide!

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The warmer weather is here, and so is boating season! Our Sheriff’s Department is offering Boater Safety Courses, as well as Vessel Inspections

The warmer weather is here, and so is boating season! We want you to stay safe here in Putnam County. Our Sheriff’s Department is offering Boater Safety Courses, as well as Vessel Inspections at the Garrison Yacht Club, Oscawana Lake Marina, Mahopac Marina and MacDonald Marina.

2016 Boater Safety Course

Vessel Inspection Schedule

  • Garrison Yacht Club – Garrison Landing, GarrisonNY 10516 on June 4th 9AM1PM
  • Oscawana Lake Marina – 96 Dunderberg Road, Putnam Valley NY 10579 on June 4th, 1PM4PM
  • Mahopac Marina – 897 South Lake Blvd, MahopacNY 10541 on June 5th, 9AM2PM
  • MacDonald Marina – 1 Marina Dr., Mahopac NY10541on June 12th, 9AM2PM

Visit the Putnam County Sheriff’s department at


First Case of Zika Virus Is Confirmed in Putnam County

BREWSTER, NY—One Putnam County resident has been confirmed positive for Zika virus and a second additional case is being tested, announced the Putnam County Department of Health today. Both residents had recently travelled out of the country. The current case count in New York State is 16 confirmed infections.

“We are working with our local physicians and the New York State Department of Health to monitor and test residents with recent travel to a Zika-affected area,” said Michael J. Nesheiwat, M.D., Interim Commissioner of Health. “Symptoms of Zika infection are usually mild. Male travelers without symptoms do not require testing. However, all pregnant women—with or without symptoms—who have travelled to a Zika-affected region should be tested, because of a link to microcephaly or other birth defects.”

Zika virus, which is spread by infected mosquitos, has been appearing around the continental United States, mostly in travelers who have visited a Zika-affected area. One lone case in Texas is being investigated in a sexual partner of a traveler from one of the affected areas.

The situation regarding Zika virus has been changing as new information develops. The Centers for Disease Control have set up a dedicated website at and the New York State Department of Health has established a Zika Information Line: 1-888-364-4723.

Testing is currently not available through commercial laboratories. Residents who have travelled to an area with Zika infection should contact their personal healthcare provider who will work with the

Putnam County Department of Health (PCDOH) to facilitate the proper testing procedure through the NYSDOH laboratory at Wadsworth Center. Wadsworth is one of only three state laboratories in the country equipped to perform the screening and confirmatory tests of Zika antibodies and other related viruses.

To date local transmission of Zika infection has been identified in 30 countries and territories,

including Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the Caribbean. Further spread in the region may occur. Prior to 2015, outbreaks of the virus had occurred only in areas of Africa, Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands. Last May the first confirmed cases were reported in Brazil.

The Health Department’s mission is to improve and protect the health of the Putnam County community, composed of nearly 100,000 residents. Core services include community health assessment, disease surveillance and control, emergency preparedness, environmental health protection, family health promotion and health education. For more information, please visit the PCDOH website at or visit the social media sites on Facebook at,, and Twitter @PutnamHealthNY.


Putnam First Responders Conduct Emergency Exercise with Metro-North

CARMEL, N.Y. – County Executive MaryEllen Odell observed the full-scale joint emergency exercise between the first responders of Putnam County and the MTA Metro-North Railroad that was held on Saturday, Nov. 21 at the Metro-North Railroad Brewster Yard. The Brewster Fire Department was the host department of the event.

“We never want to see the scenarios happen in real life, but it is good to know that the MTA Metro-North Railroad and our first responders are prepared with the tools and knowledge to handle these types of incidents,” Odell said. “Seeing everyone in action reaffirmed my confidence in the ability of the first responders who are committed to keeping the residents of Putnam County safe.”

In the drill scenario, a passenger train traveling north along Metro-North Railroad’s Harlem line encountered a motor vehicle impeding the right-of-way. The train engaged its emergency brakes, but was unable to stop in time. Passengers of the train in the front two cars sustained injuries as a result of the impact.

“Ensuring the safety and security of our customers, employees, and the public at large is the most important thing we do,” said Metro-North President Joseph Giulietti. “We strive to prevent accidents from taking place, but nevertheless, part of being safe means being ready to act quickly and carefully in the event that something does go wrong. Our exercise in Brewster helped us to do that and we appreciate the assistance of County Executive Odell, Mayor [James] Schoenig and all of the teams of first responders who participated with us in the exercise.”

The Metro-North staff and the first responders went through the response and recovery actions of the scenario. The areas of consideration were: critical transportation, operational coordination, mass search and rescue operations, public health and medical services, on-scene security, protection, and law enforcement and operational communication. The scenario included Metro-North employees, first responders and other participants who acted as victims or bystanders.

“Understanding how to handle a large-scale situation that has both injured and non-injured groups is such an important takeaway fMTA 1rom drills like this one,” said Brewster Fire Chief Tom Leather. “We are always looking to hold exercises like this one with the large corporations within Putnam’s borders. It allows our volunteers an opportunity to practice the skills they need in a safe environment, the departments gain inside information from the corporations about the emergency plans they have created and we develop working relationships with the employees of the corporations. The experience is truly valuable.”

The goal of the exercise was to ensure the participants familiarization with Metro-North’s Passenger Train Emergency Plan (PTEP), emergency response procedures, and equipment. In addition, the players were able to demonstrate incident management and coordination between the Metro-North entities, local dispatch centers and on-scene Unified Command during a complex incident. It also provided an opportunity to evaluate the rail-based search and rescue operations, management of mass casualty incident (MCI) response capabilities, including patient management and tracking, the ability to maintain a secure perimeter and facilitate crowd control and Metro-North’s and local first responders’ ability to address passengers with disabilities during emergencies.

“The value of an exercise like this is immeasurable,” said Putnam County Commissioner of the Bureau of Emergency Services Anthony Sutton. “Drills such as this put first responders together in a setting where they can observe and learn each other’s capabilities and tactics. As a first responder, you do not want to meet the members of other services for the first time at an actual crash. My hat goes off to the organizations and individuals that planned, hosted and participated in this opportunity to practice in a very realistic scenario. Putnam’s first responders learned many lessons and best practices today. Now have this learning experience to draw on should they someday face a real emergency of this nature.”

MTA 2In addition to the Brewster Fire Department and the MTA Metro-North Railroad, other participating entities include: Brewster Village Police Department, Carmel Fire Department, Carmel Volunteer Ambulance Corps, Croton Falls Fire Department, Lake Carmel Fire Department, Mahopac Falls Fire Department, Mahopac Fire Department, MTA Metro-North Railroad, MTA Police Department, New Fairfield CT Fire Department, New York State Police, North Salem Volunteer Ambulance Corps, Patterson Fire Company, Putnam County Bureau of Emergency Services, Putnam County Office for People with Disabilities, Putnam County Sheriff’s Department, Putnam Lake Fire Department and Transcare EMS.

Photo caption: Firefighters from the Brewster Fire Department participate in the Joint Emergency Exercise between Putnam County first responders and the MTA Metro-North Railroad. Photos provided by MTA/Patrick Cashin.


Putnam Legislature Votes Sutton in as Acting Emergency Services Commissioner

The Putnam County Legislature confirmed the appointment of Anthony W. Sutton as the acting Commissioner of the Bureau of Emergency Services at a special meeting held on Tuesday, May 12.

The commissioner position has been vacant since January when County Executive MaryEllen Odell decided not to reappoint former Commissioner Adam Steibeling. Robert Lipton, Deputy Commissioner of Emergency Services, has been performing the duties of his job as well as that of interim commissioner, while the Legislature decided whether to fill the position.  The Legislature voted 8-0-1 to appoint Sutton in an acting capacity until pending litigation with Steibeling is resolved.

“As elected officials it is our duty to protect and preserve the health, safety and welfare of our residents,” said Ginny Nacerino, Chairwoman of the Personnel Committee and Deputy Chairwoman of the Legislature. “I believe the decision to appoint Mr. Anthony Sutton, as Commissioner of Emergency Services, in an acting capacity, clearly speaks to our Legislative priorities.  My colleagues and I recognize having strong leadership at the Bureau, without further delay, is paramount.  Putnam County is fortunate to have someone of Mr. Sutton’s caliber on board.”

Sutton has a professional history in emergency service management. He served as the Deputy Director for Operations in the Office of Emergency Management (OEM) at the New York State Division of Homeland Security & Emergency Services (DHSES) from 2012 to 2014 where he directed NYS Emergency Operations Center activities for more than two months during Super Storm Sandy.

Sutton’s time in emergency services includes serving as a volunteer firefighter, as a Fire District Manager and consultant. Over the years, he has overseen Fire Training, Emergency Communications and Emergency Management as well as the oversight of Special Operations Teams and management of numerous disasters at both the county and state levels.

From 2000 to 2003, Sutton was the Deputy Commissioner of Emergency Services for Westchester County. He then served as Commissioner from 2003 to 2011, managing more than 300 career and volunteer Emergency Services members.

At the 2015 State of the County address in March, Odell named Sutton as her choice to hold the commissioner position in its full capacity. The selection of Sutton came after a special Selection Committee, primarily comprised of first responders, was charged with the task of finding a qualified leader to head up the Bureau.

“I am pleased to see that the Legislature is no longer willing to let litigation hold the county back from moving forward,” said Odell. “Commissioner Sutton brings knowledge and expertise to the Bureau, which it had been lacking for too long.  I appreciate all the work Bob Lipton has been doing for the Bureau over the past few months. I know that Tony and Bob will make a great team.

Sutton’s new role is effective Tuesday, May 26.

“I am honored that the Legislature agrees with County Executive Odell and has confirmed me to lead the Putnam County Bureau of Emergency Services. I believe my public safety career has prepared me to take on this critical responsibility,” said Sutton.  “I am committed to utilize all my experience as I assume my role and I look forward to building on the proven success of the Putnam Bureau of Emergency Services.



Putnam County, along with its towns and villages, are in the process of developing a Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP)

Putnam County, along with its towns and villages, are in the process of developing a Hazard Mitigation Plan (HMP).  This plan is required by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in order to be eligible for federal grant funding for public and private mitigation projects.   The HMP provides a “blueprint” by which local governments can make coordinated, cost-effective efforts towards reducing losses from natural hazards such as flooding, severe storms, severe winter storms, and wildfires.  Available funding can support projects such as drainage improvements, structural elevations, and backup power for schools and critical facilities.  To find out more, review the draft plan and have the opportunity to provide input, please visit our project website at http://www.putnamhmp.comand take our citizen preparedness and mitigation survey at




Putnam County Long Term Recovery Coalition is here to help in a disaster. Click here for more information

Putnam County Long Term Recovery Coalition

Is here to help…

The mission of the Putnam County Long Term Recovery Coalition (PCLTRC) is to collaboratively identify and assist with the unmet needs of Putnam County residents impacted by local disasters.

The PCLTRC is a member organization comprised of local faith-based, not-for-profit, governmental and business representatives designed to provide coordinated management of long-term recovery assistance to residents of Putnam County who have been affected by a local disaster and have exhausted all available insurance, government and personal resources.

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If you would like more information, please contact Putnam County Long Term Recovery Coalition at 845-278-8021 or email at


As part of National Preparedness Month, the PCDOH is sponsoring the 2nd Annual Movie Night on Sept. 26th showing World War Z.



Survey for Video Conferencing Grant

The Bureau of Emergency Services is preparing to apply for a grant that will provide for the purchase of video conferencing equipment that will be installed at many of the county’s fire departments and ambulance corps headquarters.  This will allow many training programs to be conducted through distance learning.   The information in the following survey is needed from all fire and EMS agencies in order to apply for the grant.  Please fill out and return to your coordinator as soon as possible.

Survey (all 3 pages):