The epic snowstorm that hit the Northeast last week was matched with an epic effort from first responders, including a group of firefighters in Neptune, New Jersey, population about 5,100.
The Hamilton Fire Company crew that worked the night after Christmas were all volunteers, said iReporter Bhak Tanta-Nanta, a firefighter who filmed a 67-hour shift that spanned three days.
That fire crew and other first responders had to deal with abandoned vehicles, waist-deep snow and residents upset that snow on their streets hadn't been plowed fast enough.
Among the difficulties Tanta-Nanta, a five-year volunteer, and his crew mates faced were:
– A house fire that the crew had to trek to from another street. Did firefighters have issues with the waterhose freezing? ‚ÄúWe had issues getting to the house,‚ÄĚ Tanta-Nanta said.
– Thirty inches of snow in some areas.
– Six hours of sleep over a three-day period.
Neighbors assisted first responders, digging an almost two-block-long trench so they could¬†pull an injured elderly man from his home.
Firefighters had problems getting to the man‚Äôs home. ‚ÄúWe could not reach the house but neighbors had been walking to the street [to flag down EMS crews], so they had already made a little path,‚ÄĚ Tanta-Nanta said.
At one point, neighbors and children helped dig trenches with the firefighters, Tanta-Nanta said.
‚ÄėThe whole neighborhood came together. It was really cool to see.‚ÄĚ
When asked why he volunteers, Tanta-Nanta said, ‚ÄúI don‚Äôt know. We give back to the community. That‚Äôs what we do.‚ÄĚ