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Chief Reacts To Bethpage Brush Fire

Members of the Farmingdale Fire Department were the first to the scene, on Nov. 4, responding to reports of a brush fire at Bethpage State park, along the famed Black Course in Farmingdale. 

 

According to Deputy Fire Chief Patrick Tortoso, the brush fire originated roughly 200 feet in the woods surrounding the golf course and stretched approximately 2.4 acres—bigger than the size of two football fields. 

 

“We had multiple brush trucks in the woods,” Tortoso said. “[The hose line] was so tough to get out there.” 

 

A call for mutual aid brought 16 different fire departments from Nassau and Suffolk counties rushing in to help extinguish the blaze in six hours. 

 

Bethpage State Park employees assisted in the operation with a bulldozer, making a firebreak that acted as a barrier between combustible vegetation. This helped crews gain access to the scene. Hours later, fire departments were still wetting down the area and hitting hot spots with fire hoses.

 

“We had to go back out on Tuesday and Wednesday to hit [a number of] hotspots,” Tortoso added. “It was an intense brush fire... our department did a great job to put it out.” 

 

Tortoso also thanked members of the other fire departments and state park employees for their assistance in fighting the brush fire.