A Southampton Village Volunteer Ambulance first responder truck was totaled earlier this month while responding to a medical emergency, officials have confirmed.
According to the Southampton Town Police accident report, at 12:56 p.m. on November 1, the 2007 Chevy Tahoe, which was being driven by 2nd Assistant Chief Frank Milza, was traveling with lights and sirens activated on North Sea Road, when, at the intersection of Henry Road, a 2008 Chevy Suburban crossed in front of the truck. The Tahoe struck the Suburban and veered off the road before proceeding headfirst into a tree. No injuries were reported.
At a Southampton Village Board meeting on Thursday night, November 14, SVVA Chief Richard Fowler told the board that the insurance company has deemed the Tahoe to be totaled. The ambulance company expects to receive $34,230 from the insurance company toward the purchase of a new truck, which can cost up to $70,000.
Now the village is looking at options to replace the vehicle. Because the vehicle is an emergency responder truck, containing temperature-controlled units to store medicine, the village can bypass the traditional bidding process for village-owned vehicles and purchase a new truck that fits the needs of the ambulance company.
“It is clear that a new vehicle is needed due to the accident,” Village Board member Richard W. Yastrzemski said.
To help offset the cost, the village may remove the engine from the totaled truck and put it in a decommissioned Southampton Fire Department truck, then sell that vehicle for an estimated $10,000 to $12,000. Coupled with the insurance money, that would significantly decrease the amount paid by the village.
At the meeting on Tuesday, village trustees told Chief Fowler to price out new trucks and present the lowest-priced vehicle that fits all the department’s needs in December.
On Tuesday night, trustees also heard requests for Community Development Program funding through Suffolk County. In April, the village expects to receive approximately $17,500 from the federal program, a significant reduction from the $32,596 that was approved last year.
The village trustees heard from three past grant recipients—Human Resources of the Hamptons, the Southampton Day Care, and the African American Museum of the East End—for proposals to keep receiving funds. Now, interested parties must submit applications to the village, which will forward the requests to Suffolk County for final approval.
Paul Travis has been appointed as the new chairman of the Southampton Village Planning Commission, taking the helm of the seven-member board immediately.
Mr. Travis, a village resident and sitting member on the board, replaces Siamak Samii, who submitted a letter of resignation last week. According to Southampton Village Mayor Mark Epley, Mr. Samii has chosen to leave the board to take on new architectural opportunities, and is best known for his work as a consultant with the Rogers Memorial Library on Windmill Lane.
“Siamak has been an incredible asset to this community,” Mr. Epley said during the meeting. “He is just an incredible architect and a very dedicated village servant. He is a fantastic family man, a good husband, a good father, and a good friend. I can’t find the words to be able to actually express what this guy means to the Village of Southampton, and how grateful we should all be for the work he has done.”
Mr. Travis was appointed at the recommendation of Mr. Samii, and will take over immediately.
“Paul is a quality individual, and another dedicated village resident,” Mr. Epley said. “He is a professional planner and will bring a lot to the table.”