Community asks NYPD to develop e-mail notification system on Rodman’s Neck

The entrance to the Rodman’s Neck NYPD facility in Pelham Bay Park marks the area off-limits to the general public.
Community News Group/Patrick Rocchio

A group of citizens are making noise about the NYPD’s noise pollution impacting communities lining Eastchester Bay.

Members of the City Island Civic Association have written to the police commissioner, calling on the department to create an e-mail notification system when its bomb squad detonates ordinance at the NYPD facility at Rodman’s Neck in Pelham Bay Park.

In a letter to NYPD Commissioner William Bratton dated Tuesday, February 9, the CICA noted that more frequent explosions at the firing range and detonation facility were unnerving both adults and children, and causing property damage.

The cacophony may even tax the city’s 911 system, the letter stated, because startled locals may call 911 if they are unsure of what they heard or where it is coming from.

“We ask that your department develop a plan to implement an e-mail notification system for communities along Eastchester Bay, so that residents can be notified before these explosions occur,” the CICA stated.

The measures are necessary because there have been more bomb detonations lately, said Barbara Dolensek, CICA vice-president.

Dolensek said. “I don’t know why or what is causing it.”

The association is not asking that the NYPD ‘reinvent the wheel,’ just do something for their neighbors, said John Doyle, CICA board member.

“If there can be an e-mail notification sent through Notify NYC of a traffic buildup, of inclement weather…the surrounding communities of City Island, Country Club and Edgewater Park can be given a heads up,” said Doyle.

Most of the bomb explosions are planned in advance, according to his knowledge of the matter, he said.

E-mail notifications are already sent through Notify NYC, a city system, and NY-Alert, a state program, and could likely be put in place with minimal cost, said Doyle.

“It would be a step in the right direction,” said Doyle, adding “This is a quick change that they could make right away. All you would have to do is to create a web form and have people put in their email addresses.”

Some kind of notification would not solve every community concern regarding the NYPD facility at Rodman’s Neck, but could be useful in terms of helping control the reactions of children or the elderly who might be disturbed by the denotations, he said.

Even a small change, according to the CICA letter, “would be taken as a sign of respect to those living in the area and demonstrate a change in the decades of secrecy concerning the range.”

The CICA has also corresponded with the NYPD about issues at Rodman’s Neck related to noise from its firing range.

During a visit to City Island in July 2015, Commissioner Bratton said that the NYPD would spend $150 million to renovate the Rodman’s Neck facility.

The NYPD did not comment as of press time.

Reach Reporter Patrick Rocchio at (718) 260–4597. E-mail him at procchio@cnglocal.com. Follow him on Twitter @patrickfrocchio.

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