Poquonnock Bridge firefighters took a leisurely ride through Bluff Point State Park Thursday, but all too often, they are rushing there to help someone who has fallen, is lost, or is having a medical emergency.
“We’d have to cover both trails at the same time with more manpower and it can take a while,” said firefighter Mike Bednarz.
Two years ago, a man had a heart attack while on the far end of the three and a half mile loop. He didn’t survive.
“Over an hour between finding him and doing CPR and it was just too long,” said Chief Joe Winski of the Poquonnock Bridge Fire District.
Zach Brewster developed a marker system to help get first responders to where they need to be faster as his Eagle Scout project. Each of the 26 posts mark major trail intersections.
“We took 12-foot posts and we made them into six footers,” explained Brewster.
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He then had a team of 20 and a post hole digger provided by the state install them two feet into the ground.
“And we also have giant timber spikes sticking out each side,” added Brewster.
The first post explains the marker system and how it will help. It was recently used for a kayaker in distress.
“The trail system was a big help for that because they just said I was at marker 14,” said Brewster.
If you look closely at the numbers or shine a light on them, you can see that they are reflective. Brewster meticulously put glass beads in each one. So, a hiker’s headlamp or a first responder’s headlight will light up these posts at night.
It could be a life-saving tool. “All my hard work went to something bigger than me,” said Brewster.
A tool which could last many lifetimes.
“Hopefully, I can show my kids that, ‘Hey, this is my project and it’s still standing,'” added Brewster.