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New York - Rockland Officials Ask State To Take Over Fire Safety In Ramapo And Spring Valley

Published on: April 15, 2016 01:14 PM
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Rockland County Executive Ed Day speaking at the press conference earlier today. (Sandy Eller/VINnews.com)Rockland County Executive Ed Day speaking at the press conference earlier today. (Sandy Eller/VINnews.com)

New York - Charging both the Village of Spring Valley and the Town of Ramapo with negligence in the highest order for failing to enforce zoning and fire safety codes, a group of Rockland County elected officials called for immediate state intervention in order to prevent potential tragedy.

Assemblyman Ken Zebrowski and Rockland County Executive Ed Day were flanked by Senator David Carlucci and Assemblywoman Ellen Jaffee as well a contingent of approximately two dozen volunteer firefighters at a press conference held this morning at the Rockland County Fire Training Center in Pomona.

Zebrowski described conditions in both Spring Valley and Ramapo as “not only deplorable but illegal” and gave a multi-year timeline that detailed a long history of schools that have been operating with temporary certificates of occupancy that are several years old. Zebrowski noted that many of these schools have since added trailers to house their growing enrollment, further undermining students’ safety and that the violations are equally shocking in illegally converted homes that may house many more occupants than allowed by law.

While the state has been notified of these failures and has found no compliance with even minimum standards in some cases, Zebrowski charged that little has changed, with many schools and buildings found to have never been inspected.

“These conditions are a tragedy waiting to happen,” said Zebrowski calling on the state to take over for the buildings departments in both municipalities or allowing the County to step in instead.

As previously reported on VIN News, a Town of Ramapo fire inspector has been placed on modified duty after a state inspection found serious violations at a property he had certified as up to code just weeks earlier.

Zebrowski, who introduced his grandfather Al, a volunteer firefighter in Rockland for more than 60 years, also called upon the state to discontinue funding to any school that does not have an up to date fire safety certificate.

 Senator David Carlucci Senator David Carlucci

Holding up a stack of press releases and a collection of ten letters written by Zebrowski to state officials, Day declared that strong words were a good start but not enough to save lives.

“We need action based on words or we can use this paper as kindling for the next fire,” said Day.

Day noted that he would do everything in his power to ensure that buildings in the county, particularly schools, are safe and code compliant, allowing the county’s all volunteer fire force to do their jobs for the 300,000 people who call Rockland County home.

“These are not numbers,” said Day.  “These are children. Are we going to wait to see children coming out in body bags because they couldn’t get out?”

Fire Commissioner Gordon Wren said that his volunteers have been shocked to find almost no enforcement in the county and that violations are rarely taken seriously. Wren singled out a property at 33 Forshay Road, home to Congregation Ateres Yisroel, which was fined last year for having an illegal dormitory and criticized the Town of Ramapo for looking the other way. Owners of the property, which include a wood frame single story home and three trailers, were hit with 19 violations two years ago after inspectors found a working matza bakery on the premises as reported by The Journal News.

Retired firefighter Jeff Cool of the FDNY who was injured jumping out of a fourth floor window of an illegally converted burning building in the Bronx in 2005 said that slumlords must be held accountable for their actions, which he said are motivated by nothing other than greed.

“When a child dies in a fire, those memories, they haunt you forever,” said Cool.

Assemblywoman Ellen JaffeeAssemblywoman Ellen Jaffee
Retired firefighter Jeff Cool of the FDNY who was injured jumping out of a fourth floor window of an illegally converted burning building in the Bronx in 2005. (Sandy Eller/VINnews.com)Retired firefighter Jeff Cool of the FDNY who was injured jumping out of a fourth floor window of an illegally converted burning building in the Bronx in 2005. (Sandy Eller/VINnews.com)

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Read Comments (21)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Apr 15, 2016 at 01:47 PM LionofZion Says:

Baruch HaShem, somebody cares about Jewish children. Too bad our "leaders" ran with independence and failed miserably.

2

 Apr 15, 2016 at 01:53 PM Anonymous Says:

This will save many lives but most will say it's antisemitism.

3

 Apr 15, 2016 at 02:36 PM jsjcbs Says:

Baruch Hashem. It's probably too late though. Unless they plan to tear down all the pop-up yeshivas and multi-multi-multi-family homes, the danger will still exist.

4

 Apr 15, 2016 at 02:39 PM Anonymous Says:

The same people who are against fire safety are st Lawrence voters. St Lawrence gave the order to pass all yeshivas no matter how bad the violations were.

5

 Apr 15, 2016 at 03:08 PM kenyaninwhitehouse Says:

Ed Day cares about Yiddish kinda and their safety. I hope he runs for governor one day, he's got my vote, is it anti-Semitic to have safe yeshivas?

6

 Apr 17, 2016 at 12:01 AM WiseDude Says:

The Monsey rabbonim consider enforcement of fire safety to be anti semitic persecution. It is so backwards in Monsey. The rabbonim supported St. Lawrence against a honest frum politician even though they knew St. Lawrence was a crook who had been raided by the FBI. Monsey is a joke. The developers are cleaning up and everyone else is suffering and this is considered good for the Jews in Monsey. Frum people should not be involved publicly with crooks but in Monsey that is the style of Yiddishkeit. Sorry but that is the truth. It's all about money.

7

 Apr 15, 2016 at 04:13 PM Anonymous Says:

One of the rabbis at a yeshiva on TV claimed fire rules are antisemitism. He needs to be fired

8

 Apr 15, 2016 at 04:21 PM Realist77 Says:

Their disregard for zoning laws places first responders and the children in danger.

9

 Apr 15, 2016 at 05:38 PM LionofZion Says:

Baruch HaShem, somebody cares about Jewish children. Too bad our "leaders" ran with independence and failed miserably.

10

 Apr 15, 2016 at 05:54 PM mr613 Says:

Christopher St. Lawrence should step down from his position !
He's an indicted official who's lost the public trust!
All Ramapo police officers should officially denounce him and protest his continuance of holding the position of Police Commissioner he is a black mark on the Police Department and the town as a whole!

11

 Apr 16, 2016 at 03:23 PM Anonymous Says:

FiosTV has a long report about in one Pomona illegal yeshiva, the doors are padlocked, trash and garbage is thrown out the windows and mold is on the walls. This illegal school gets government funding! As a parent, they are risking their childrens' lives, and yet parents just don't care. What a shanda.

12

 Apr 16, 2016 at 09:52 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #5  
kenyaninwhitehouse Says:

Ed Day cares about Yiddish kinda and their safety. I hope he runs for governor one day, he's got my vote, is it anti-Semitic to have safe yeshivas?

Ed Day's Facebook posts show that he cares about Jewish "kinda" as much as you do. Which means he hates them and finds them only useful to harass their parents.

He posts on rabidly anti Semitic sites and hosts sick comments on his own.

And they are not comments that are up for interpretation as to whether they are hateful and bigoted.

Just as your comments are unquestionably stupid and hateful.


Just look at that lunatic's face in the accompanying picture.

That is him.

13

 Apr 16, 2016 at 11:00 PM Anonymous Says:

Oh my- Mr Day is sooo concerned with our safety he wouldlike to put all of us in a nice safe jail.

Voters who take the time to look at this state fire inspection issue will see that over 1000 non jewish private schools didnt send in the state fire inspection.. And that was only because for the past 15 years or so-THEY HAVENT PICKED UP THE FORM.. so quite simply schools throughout NY state havent bothered to fill out a form that they just put year after year into a draw that never gets picked up!

Rest assure every single yeshiva in Monsey has a local fire inspection certificate - if they didnt the fire dept would never allow them to open..

Open your eyes people- this is a publicity stunt- much ado about nothing..

Open your eyes.

14

 Apr 17, 2016 at 06:01 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #13  
Anonymous Says:

Oh my- Mr Day is sooo concerned with our safety he wouldlike to put all of us in a nice safe jail.

Voters who take the time to look at this state fire inspection issue will see that over 1000 non jewish private schools didnt send in the state fire inspection.. And that was only because for the past 15 years or so-THEY HAVENT PICKED UP THE FORM.. so quite simply schools throughout NY state havent bothered to fill out a form that they just put year after year into a draw that never gets picked up!

Rest assure every single yeshiva in Monsey has a local fire inspection certificate - if they didnt the fire dept would never allow them to open..

Open your eyes people- this is a publicity stunt- much ado about nothing..

Open your eyes.

Why are you lying? Jewish lives are at stake!!! You are sending our Kinder to death.

15

 Apr 17, 2016 at 06:05 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #13  
Anonymous Says:

Oh my- Mr Day is sooo concerned with our safety he wouldlike to put all of us in a nice safe jail.

Voters who take the time to look at this state fire inspection issue will see that over 1000 non jewish private schools didnt send in the state fire inspection.. And that was only because for the past 15 years or so-THEY HAVENT PICKED UP THE FORM.. so quite simply schools throughout NY state havent bothered to fill out a form that they just put year after year into a draw that never gets picked up!

Rest assure every single yeshiva in Monsey has a local fire inspection certificate - if they didnt the fire dept would never allow them to open..

Open your eyes people- this is a publicity stunt- much ado about nothing..

Open your eyes.

Totally false. The illegal yeshiva opened without fire inspections. By your poor spelling, I realized you are uneducated. Get your GED and save a kid's life from burning in a padlocked door locked yeshiva!!!!

16

 Apr 17, 2016 at 11:20 AM SuffernDeb Says:

Reply to #12  
Anonymous Says:

Ed Day's Facebook posts show that he cares about Jewish "kinda" as much as you do. Which means he hates them and finds them only useful to harass their parents.

He posts on rabidly anti Semitic sites and hosts sick comments on his own.

And they are not comments that are up for interpretation as to whether they are hateful and bigoted.

Just as your comments are unquestionably stupid and hateful.


Just look at that lunatic's face in the accompanying picture.

That is him.

If you will make such an accusation you should back it up. What are your examples of Ed Day posts that are "sick comments on his own" that are not up "for interpretation as to whether they are hateful and bigoted." I have not seen any myself. So far I have someone who promised to clean up Rockland and appears to be trying.

17

 Apr 17, 2016 at 11:45 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to 14 and 15-
I am not lying-

Check your facts- The state has NOT picked up their redundant , not needed, not necessary ,stupid, extra...et.al fire inspection application for many many years till thousands of private schools throughout the state simply stopped filling it out..
Its redundant because the Local one, by the local fire dept is the one that counts..
verify this with the gentleman that represents the State- I did.

The reason they havent picked it up is because they haven't the man power to process it and its only a formality/
The Local FireDept does a safety inspection- and yes Mr #15 if one Yeshiva was open without fire inspection.. and IF this is true and it might be true- then why demonize and why feed into the press's and Mr Days frenzy that all the yeshivas are bad.. WHY?

The drums are beating, folks.. shut your stupid self hating mouths and open your ears and eyes.

Stop jumping on the" Day" school bus.#14

sending our school kids to death? oh though doth protest too much!

#!5 How did you know I never got my GED- surely you could tell because I didnt use spell check and wrote it fast late Sat nt.. but wow ur smart- i do not have 1

18

 Apr 17, 2016 at 05:54 PM Anonymous Says:

You use run on sentences, incorrect punctuation and your reading comprehension signify no education. Every comment to you is antisemitism when you know you are wrong. Fire codes for our kinder is not antisemitism like your ruv tells you.

19

 Apr 18, 2016 at 09:14 AM RocklandRes Says:

Everyone knows smoke detection / fire alarm systems, emergency lights, free egress, fire extinguishers, electrical wiring codes were first introduced by Nazi loser thugs. NFPA codes are obviously antisemitic Nazi propaganda.

20

 Apr 18, 2016 at 09:50 AM OhevYisroel Says:

yeah sure! he cares for our children!! he really means it!! it's ONLY for our children's sake, he simply can't sleep at night. ah ha!!

21

 Apr 19, 2016 at 05:48 PM awacs Says:

Just one question:

Yidden have been in Monsey, what - 40 years now? Every year we hear we these dire predictions of death, etc.

Where are these fires they keep predicting? Where are the rows of body bags of children we're supposed to be having?

It gets a bit old.

22

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