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25 years ago: 15 Harford ambulances recalled, two taken out of service

2:12 PM EDT, August 8, 2012

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From The Aegis dated Aug. 13, 1987:

More than a dozen Ford ambulances used by Harford County volunteer fire companies were recalled by their manufacturer 25 years ago this week and at least two were taken off the road.

Mechanical problems were causing fires in the 1986 ambulance models, which Ford was fixing, albeit slowly. A representative from Bel Air Volunteer Fire Company said mechanics were having a hard time getting the necessary parts to fix the ambulances, many of which couldn't be put out of service because the companies answered so many calls. Like Bel Air, for example, which had three ambulances, two of which were recalled.

"We have too many calls to have our ambulance parked," chief Don MacLean said.

Abingdon Volunteer Fire Company, however, was forced to put one of its ambulances out of commission because of problems.

"We had just returned from a call and the gas was literally boiling out of the tank," an ambulance lieutenant said, adding her company was going to have to rely on its other ambulance and those of other companies to handle its calls.

Nine kids between 11 and 15 years old who were passengers on an unairconditioned Amtrak train on their way to New York fromWashington, D.C., were taken to Harford Memorial Hospital after being overcome by heat. Five different ambulance runs were needed to transport all the children, who were treated at the hospital and released.

The car's air conditioning wasn't working and 60 kids were in the car on a day when temperatures were in the 90s and it was muggy outside.

"You could imagine putting 60 to 70 kids in a train car, without air-conditioning on a day like that," Aberdeen Fire Company Chief D. Bennett Smith said. The passengers were complaining of stomach aches, headaches, faintness and nausea.

Accused cop killer Frank Green said in court 25 years ago this week he was denied his rights when he asked for a lawyer nearly a year earlier, just after he had allegedly shot and killed a Maryland Toll Facilities police officer.

During an evidence suppression hearing, Green testified that he requested a lawyer while he was being held on the ground by police officers. As audio and video tapes were played in the courtroom, officers testified Green had waived his rights to have a lawyer with him as he made a statement to police.

Harford County was not one of 15 counties in Maryland that were under consideration by theU.S. Department of Agricultureas disaster areas 25 years ago this week.

Despite that they weren't included, Harford farmers still suffering from a lack of rain could be eligible for two forms of federal aid because they adjoin counties that could be declared disasters. Farmers could get emergency crop loans and feed supply loans.

More graduate and upper level undergraduate classes would soon be available to students at Harford Community College, thanks to an agreement among HCC, the county and University of Maryland.

The county executive agreed to provide $45,000 to have UMBC offer higher level classes in technical fields through HCC.

Morning customers at the Edgewood McDonald's were treated to a family affair. During the morning rush, three mother-daughter teams regularly filled customers' orders. A third mom-daughter tandem worked at the store, and though the daughter worked mostly at night, she occasionally filled in on morning shifts, making it a true family experience.

"It does add to the family atmosphere," store manager Mac Hood said.

The Havre de Grace Seafood heated up 25 years ago, just like it will be this weekend. A quarter century ago, an estimated 3,000 people attended the festival and ate 67 bushels of crabs over the weekend in Tydings Park.

Harford's three Klein's stores in Aberdeen, Bel Air and Forest Hill were offering back-to-school savings 25 years ago this week. Five-subject notebooks were $1.29 each, brief folders with pockets were four for $1, a Trapper Keeper portfolio was 39 cents and three-ring binders (blue or fashion design) were $1.99 each.