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State Police Bomb Squad Deactivate Pressurized Bottles in Adams

By Jack Guerino
iBerkshires Staff

ADAMS, Mass. — The state police bomb squad was called to Airport Road on Thursday morning to investigate a cluster of pressurized bottles containing an unknown liquid.

Police Chief Richard Tarsa said police responded to the scene around 7:30 a.m. after a truck ran over one of the plastic bottles causing it to burst, making a loud sound.

Tarsa said the bottles were scattered in the road and contained some sort of chemical that caused them to pressurize, similar to a bottle of soda.

"We had a bottle that was pressurized and a vehicle drove over it and it erupted, which sounded like an explosion but was just the eruption of the device," the chief said. "It was not an explosive device. This is not an IED by any means. It's a sealed water bottle with a chemical in it that creates pressure."

Although there was no damage to the car or driver, Tarsa said the road was closed and Fire Department and the state police bomb squad were called to investigate.

There were three other bottles on the road. One was defective but the other two were live.

"The bomb squad came out and they used the robotic arm," he said. "It grabs the bottle and the arm is designed to depressurize the bottle by putting a hole in it and making it inactive."

The first bottle was successfully depressurized, however, the second had built up enough pressure that when the arm touched it, it burst.

Tarsa said the police are unsure who set the bottles and the incident is under investigation. He added that whoever placed the bottles set up an incredibly dangerous situation for themselves and those passing through the area.

"This is a stupid thing to do because whoever made these devices there was the ability for the bottles to go off in their hands and with chemicals, you are looking at chemical burns," Tarsa said. "And being in a roadway that is a place where a lot of people walk their dogs ... what happens if a dog latches on to it?"

Tarsa said the bottles were somewhat isolated on the rural road and in the end, everything was handled according to protocol, and there were no damages or injuries.


Adams Woman Killed in One-Car Crash on Route 112

ASHFIELD, Mass. — A 67-year-old Adams woman was killed in a single-car crash on Monday afternoon on Route 112 in Ashfield.

State police, who are investigating the incident, said the victim's identity would not be immediately released on Monday night.

Late Tuesday the woman was identified as Theresa Mille.

The Daily Hampshire Gazette reported that the Toyota Corolla she was driving flipped over the guardrail on the northbound lane. The accident occurred between Sears Road and the Three Sisters Sanctuary.

The crash occurred at about 3:15 p.m. and caused the northbound lane to be closed for about an hour during the on-scene investigation.

Troopers assigned to the Shelburne Falls Barracks and the state police Collision Analysis Reconstruction Section, State Police Detective Unit and Crime Scene Services Section, along with Ashfield Fire Department, responded to calls of the car crash.

The woman died as a result of her injuries. Her male passenger was transported to Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield for unknown injuries. His name also was not being released.

State Police said no further information was available at this time.


Adams Man Pleads Not Guilty to Attempted Quadlands Robbery

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The man accused of robbing Quadlands Flowers & Gifts in June is being held on $25,000 bail.

David J. Taylor, 22, of Old Columbia Street in Adams, pleaded not guilty on Thursday afternoon in Superior Court in Pittsfield of a single count of armed assault with intent to rob a person 60 years of age or older.

Judge Daniel Ford ordered that he be held at the Berkshire County House of Correction.

Taylor is accused of entering the flower shop on Holden Street at about 9:30 a.m. on June 20 and brandishing a handgun at the sales clerk that had been tucked in his waistband. He did not get any money and no one was injured.

The investigation was conducted by members of the North Adams Police Department.


Adams Couple Injured in Five-Car Accident

By Jack Guerino
iBerkshires Staff
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — A five-car accident on Curran Highway on Sunday afternoon sent three people to the hospital, two with serious injuries.
Police Sgt. James Burdick said driver Anthony McBride, 83, and his wife, Ruth McBride, 84, of Adams,  were traveling north on Curran Highway around 1:40 p.m. in a 2004 Pontiac Vibe. McBride, former Adams town moderator and longtime businessman, made a left turn to go onto Old State Street to the secondary entrance of Walmart but failed to stop.
Burdick said McBride pulled into the path of Adam Bethoney, 28, of Stamford, Vt., who was heading south in a 2010 GMC pickup truck. Burdick said Bethoney tried to avoid the Vibe but the two vehicles collided, sent the McBride vehicle into the Mohawk Auto Center parking lot, then back into the southbound lanes, and over the median, where he collided with 67-year-old Richard Wade of North Adams who was northbound in a 2010 Chevrolet Malibu.
"Mr. Bethoney attempted to avoid the accident but was unable to do so, and the two motor vehicles collided which spun the McBride vehicle and it collided with one of the vehicles in the Mohawk parking lot," Burdick said. "It crossed the southbound lane, jumped the median and hit the Wade vehicle."
Burdick said he was behind Wade in his cruiser when the accident occurred. 
Two cars at the Mohawk Auto Center were damaged, he said. Even though they were parked, they are still part of the accident.
"It is a five-car accident, not two because two of the cars were parked at the Mohawk Auto Center for sale," he said. "They are still damaged and are still accident cars and the McBride vehicle did cross the median strip and did hit the Wade vehicle in the rear. Slight as it may have been, it was touched and is part of the accident."
Burdick said there are charges pending against McBride. 
Burdick said the McBrides' condition is unknown. Anthony McBride is currently at Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield and Ruth McBride is at Baystate in Springfield. Bethoney was transported to BMC's North Adams campus, where he was treated and released.
Burdick said the McBride vehicle is a total loss, the Bethoney vehicle sustained heavy front-end damage but can be repaired, the Wade vehicle received no notable damage, one of the parked cars received some front-end damage and the other parked car received some paint damage from flying debris.
"The truck didn’t hit it," Burdick said. "It was all of the flying debris, dirt, rocks and pieces of the two cars."
North Adams Ambulance, Adams Ambulance, the North Adams Fire department and Adams police department were also on scene.

Adams Man Dies While Tubing On Deerfield River

Staff Reports
Update: 10:27 p.m.: The Northwestern district attorney's office has released the name of the Adams man who drowned in the Deerfield River on Wednesday as Thomas N. Hereford, 51.

According to reports on MassLive, Hereford fell behind the group he was with when his tube began losing air. Members of the group were unable to locate him and his body was recovered by the Northfield Dive Team on Wednesday night.

Hereford's Facebook page says he was employed by Northern Berkshire Stone Masonry and was a graduate of Hoosac Valley High School.

CHARLEMONT, Mass. — A 51-year-old Adams died while tubing on the Deerfield River, according to the Northwestern District Attorney's Office.
Authorities say the body of the man was recovered in the river Wednesday evening and the body is being sent to the chief medical examiner to determine the cause of death. 
The man's name has not been released until next of kin is notified. The district attorney's office says the man was reportedly "tubing with several co-workers near the intersection of the Deerfield and Cold Rivers."
The body was recovered by members of the Northfield Dive Team and Massachusetts State Police are investigating the incident but say no foul play is suspected.
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