Between Sept. 1 and Sept. 15, the Harvard Fire Department responded to two car crashes, one automatic house alarm, one report of a smell of smoke, and four requests for help with smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Chief Rick Sicard conducted three smoke/carbon monoxide alarm inspections and four liquid propane inspections. Chief Sicard also attended fire drills at the Hildreth Elementary and Bromfield schools to check that everyone got out of the buildings in time and that all went smoothly.
Monday, Sept. 4
Old Mill Road residents called at 5:30 a.m. to report a smoke detector going off. Deputy Chief Charlie Nigzus responded; he found the ringing detector and replaced the batteries, but the detector did not reset and test correctly. He told the homeowners to replace the unit. At 9:50 p.m. Finn Road homeowners called to report a chirping detector. Lt. Tony Shaw responded. He located the detector, determined it was faulty, checked that the other detectors were functioning correctly, and advised the homeowners to replace the faulty detector.
Tuesday, Sept. 5
Six firefighters responded to an automatic alarm at a Harris Lane residence at 4:38 p.m. The firefighters checked the home but found no sign of smoke or fire. They reset the detector that was ringing, and it resumed normal function. Then they checked the other units and told the residents to check the batteries and clean the units.
Wednesday, Sept. 6
At the Wednesday night training, firefighters had a demonstration of and got to work with various hoses and nozzles, new equipment that the department is evaluating.
Friday, Sept. 8
The state police reported a multivehicle accident on Route 2 westbound. Seven firefighters responded. Dispatch also called the Littleton Fire Department, which arrived at the scene first, and the Harvard response was canceled on route.
Monday, Sept 11
Lt. Shaw responded to a 4 p.m. call from a Lancaster County Road homeowner about a beeping smoke detector. He replaced the batteries in the detector. When he checked the other detectors in the home, he discovered that they were not all wired together; he advised the homeowners to call an electrician.
Tuesday, Sept. 12
At 5 p.m. the department received a report of a smell of smoke near Mass. Ave. Five firefighters responded. Using Engine 2, Tower 1, and the tanker they drove the Mass. Ave.–Slough Road–Bolton Road triangle but neither saw nor smelled smoke. They returned to the station at 5:45 p.m.
Thursday, Sept. 14
Five firefighters responded to a carbon monoxide monitor ringing at 4 a.m. at a South Shaker Road home. They checked the house with a handheld gas meter; all readings were normal. The firefighters reset the detector.
Friday, Sept 15
At 7 p.m. a car hit a utility pole on Stow Road, snapped the pole, and came to rest on its side, driver’s side down. Nine firefighters responded. The passengers were already out of the car when the firefighters arrived. The department cleaned up the scene, including using an absorbent to contain leaked fluids. The firefighters waited for National Grid to arrive and helped to close the road while the utility company replaced the pole. The firefighters were back at the station at 8:30 p.m.
FIRE DEPARTMENT FACTOID
An “officer call” is a non-life-threatening emergency when the fire officer on call makes a decision based on the information given by dispatch as to whether the officer will do the preliminary investigation or will request a response with the entire department. The four fire lieutenants rotate as the officer on call, each taking one week per month. Deputy Chief Nigzus fills in as needed (including if there is a fifth week in a month). The officers cover from 6 p.m. to 8 a.m. weekdays and the entire weekend.
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.