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Elma purchases three UTV vehicles for future storms, emergencies

Posted at 6:06 PM, Dec 29, 2014
and last updated 2015-12-24 18:06:10-05

The town of Elma is boosting its emergency resources by purchasing three UTV vehicles, which can be used in extreme weather conditions, much like the November storm.

The town used UTVs during the November storm, but they were from neighboring communities. Town of Elma Supervisor Dennis Powers says the town relied heavily on the vehicles, transporting patients with dialysis, bringing life saving medication to homes, and even helping an expecting mother get to the hospital.

"We saw a need to take care of ourselves, and we did," said Powers.

The machine can transport up to six people, and even has room on the back for a stretcher in an emergency situation.

Even so, one council member is opposing the nearly $60,000 purchase. Thomas Fallon voted against the spending, telling The Elma Review the purchase was "irresponsible."

"It was not a frivolous purchase," Powers told 7 Eyewitness News. "Number one it was a state of emergency (when the purchase was made),number two it was purchased off the state bid, and number three there was a vote 4-1."

"If this unit saves one life....it's well worth it," said Elma Firefighter Brian Nolan. "We're going to be able to use these year-round. We'll be able to travel off-road to be able to put out any brush fires, forest-type fires."

In response to the storm that remains on everyone's minds, New York lawmakers, along with members of the New York State Thruway Authority and the State Department of Transportation, will host a roundtable discussion Friday, January 9th at ECC South.

The discussion will be open to the public.