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When It Rains, It Pours

Thu, 07/20/2023 - 11:13
A rain gauge in Sag Harbor read only 2.67 inches, but flooding on Spring Street, at left, and in the lot behind Main Street told a different story on Sunday.
Maziar Behrooz

In Sag Harbor during Sunday’s downpour, Police Officer Scott Frankenbach physically carried Vanessa Rome and her young daughter out of their car on Milton Avenue at Richards Drive after they got stuck in a large puddle. According to the official report, the car had water up to the doors.

Police reports documented similar stories unfolding across the South Fork as rain and wind pummeled the area.

Even as the rain fell, patrons gathered under a tent at the property of Maison Close, a restaurant in Montauk that was recently destroyed by a fire. Someone had called in a noise complaint at about 6 p.m., but the officer took a decibel reading and found the music level to be in compliance.

On Hildreth Place in Springs, a driver abandoned her disabled car in the flooded roadway; East Hampton Town Police Officer Ryan Balnis was able to push the car out of the lane of traffic to await a tow by Bonac Buy and Sell.

A Mercedes, a BMW, a Mitsubishi, and a Toyota all became stranded on Gardiner Avenue in Springs. Officers responded at about 8:30 p.m. and called in tow trucks when the drivers’ own attempts to contact private towing companies went unanswered.

Throughout the storm, other kinds of calls for help continued to roll in. The East Hampton Fire Department responded at about 9:30 p.m. to a fire alarm on Jonathan Drive, finding smoke in the house that turned out to be from a fireplace with improper ventilation.

Finally, at about 2 a.m. on Monday, Police Officer Michael Gomez came upon a disabled car while on routine patrol on Woodbine Drive in Springs. Its owner, Telmo Parrataday, told the officer he had no cellphone reception when he tried calling for help. Officer Gomez gave Mr. Parrataday a lift home. He later returned with a family member to remove the car from the road.

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