Between July 1 and August 4 the Harvard Fire Department responded to 11 multivehicle accidents, six requests for help with smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, one search and rescue, one request for mutual aid to Bolton, two automatic alarms, and one request for help with a gas stove. The fire chief completed the following inspections: 32 smoke/CO alarms, one fire alarm, three propane tanks, one oil burner, one dumpster, and three safety.
Sunday, July 2
Four Harvard firefighters provided mutual aid for an automatic house alarm in Bolton. The Harvard firefighters arrived at the Harvard Road residence at the same time as the Bolton deputy fire chief. The house was locked and there were no signs of smoke or fire. The Bolton deputy checked the exterior of the property with a thermal-imaging camera, found no signs of a fire, and released the Harvard crew.
Thursday, July 6
A firefighter responded to an alarm at Fruitlands Museum. The officer cleaned and reset the alarm.
Friday, July 7
The Police Department requested a firefighter’s assistance at an incident on Bolton Road at 11:15 a.m. A farrier had failed to secure the rear door of his truck when leaving a residence: horseshoes and the farrier’s equipment were strewn along the road. The police asked the firefighter to secure the propane tank and oxyacetylene rig while the police handled the rest of the scene.
Wednesday, July 12: Eight firefighters responded to a multivehicle accident on Route 2 eastbound.
Saturday, July 15
Nine firefighters responded to a single-car accident on Poor Farm Road at 12:30 a.m. They found a vehicle with a broken windshield and axle and missing a tire; no occupant was present. The firefighters searched the area for an hour and a half, drove slowly up and down the road using their thermal-imaging camera to scan the woods, and they walked the woods for a half-mile on both sides of the accident scene, but they did not find the occupant. The vehicle was towed.
Sunday, July 16
A Mass. Ave. resident requested assistance at 9:53 a.m. with a chirping carbon monoxide detector. The responding officer checked the house with the gas meter, found all readings to be normal, and advised the resident to replace the detector.
Monday, July 17
A Littleton Road family called at 11:45 a.m. because the igniter on their gas range would not stop clicking. Two firefighters checked the stove, turned off the gas supply, and advised the owners to schedule a service call.
Wednesday, July 19
Four firefighters responded to an automatic alarm at a commercial building on Ayer Road. They found that a detector on the second floor had activated; after the firefighters cleaned it, the alarm functioned normally.
Wednesday, July 26: Six firefighters and the ambulance responded to a motorcycle accident on Route 2 eastbound at 7 a.m. The rider refused medical treatment and rode from the scene. At 8:20 a.m. the department was called to a two-car accident on the on-ramp from Route 110 south onto Route 2 east. The Harvard ambulance took the first car’s occupant to Emerson Hospital, and the Ayer ambulance took the second car’s three occupants to Nashoba Valley Medical Center. As the Fire Department finished its work, a state police officer asked for assistance with a just-reported four-car accident on Route 2 east between Jackson Road and Route 110. At the third accident scene there were no injuries, but there was a small antifreeze spill that was contained with an absorbent. One car was towed from the scene. At 9:30 a.m. the department received a call to help with a search-and-rescue effort. A resident walking in the woods off Old Littleton Road had fallen and called 911 for assistance, giving a clear description of his location. Three firefighters and two ambulance crew members carried him out on a backboard while the police took his dog home. The resident was taken by ambulance to Emerson Hospital.
Thursday, July 27
Four firefighters responded to a single-car accident on Park Lane at 5:42 p.m.; a car sideswiped a utility pole and came to rest on a stone wall. The car was towed. At 8:37 p.m. six firefighters responded to an automatic alarm on Shaker Road. They identified the detector, which was not working, discovered it was expired, and recommended that the owners replace all the detectors in their home.
Friday, July 28
Firefighters responded to a car-deer accident on Ayer Road at 7 a.m. Firefighters cleaned the minor fluid leak and the car was towed; the deer was not found. At 9:06 p.m. East Bare Hill residents called to ask for assistance with a chirping detector on a cathedral ceiling. The officer got a tall ladder, cleaned the detector, and advised the homeowners replace all the detectors.
Saturday, July 29
A firefighter spent an hour and half identifying detectors that were chirping intermittently in a Westcott Road home; the officer advised the homeowners to replace all detectors.
Monday, July 31
An officer assisted Still River Road homeowners with an alarm that had sounded briefly two nights running. The officer advised the owners to replace the batteries annually.
Wednesday, August 2: Four firefighters responded to a single-car accident at 12:19 a.m. on Route 2 westbound. The occupant was transferred to Emerson Hospital. At 1:45 a.m. four firefighters responded to a carbon monoxide alarm at a Candleberry Lane residence. When they arrived the alarm was not sounding. The firefighters checked the home with gas meters but found no abnormal readings. They replaced the battery in the detector that had sounded.
Thursday, August 3
The department responded to a three-car accident on Route 2 eastbound at 6:40 a.m. At 3:23 p.m. three firefighters responded to a single-car accident at the intersection of Woodchuck Hill and Slough roads. A utility pole was damaged; the car was towed.
FIRE DEPARTMENT FACTOID
Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors should be cleaned every few months. Either vacuum gently or wipe off cobwebs and dust with a cloth. Press the test button after cleaning to check alarm function. In addition to checking the expiration date of the batteries, check the expiration date of the detector: In general they last seven to 10 years.
The Fire Department Log is written every other week by a Harvard Press reporter based on information gleaned from daily logs and interviews with a department firefighter.