Haddam Volunteer Fire Company responded to a utility pole fire just after 4:30 p.m. on April 1,2015 at 1292 Saybrook Road in Haddam. A tree branch had fallen, crossed the power line and snapped the line in half. Both ends of the wires fell and arced to the ground for about 20 minutes causing several fire flame-ups along side the road. Firefighters shut down traffic for about 45 minutes as EverSource de-energized the pole.
Once EverSource deemed the area safe, firefighters used a hose line from Engine 1-13 to cool the ground, which had the potential to be about 2,000 degrees. The area was so hot, water boiled on the surface. While using New York hooks to penetrate the ground, firefighters removed three rocky masses called fulgurites. Fulgurites are irregularly shaped tubes formed by fusion when lightning, or in this case, electricity, strikes sand. The intense heat of the arc and the high current flowing into the ground causes sand, rocks, and minerals in the soil near the line to fuse into a glassy, lava-like substance. (Photo by Olivia Drake)