Rolling Thunder: Fall Run 2005

By Susan BushPrint Story | Email Story
Fall Run co-founder and Custom City Cycle shop owner Mike Robert
Adams- Leather, chrome, and the deep rumble of motorcycle engines filled Bowe Field on Sept. 25 when hundreds of “iron horses” powered up and thundered into the Fall Run 2005. This year marks the 24th consecutive time that riders from all across the Northeast have ridden –no matter what the weather- to raise money for specific organizations. Since 1989, the run has generated revenues for the Springfield-based Shriners Hospital, including the Shriners Burn Unit. As this year’s run morning dawned, the multi-year total raised for the hospital was at about $196,000; by the end of the run, it was expected that the grand total would be well over $200,000, said run founders and organizers Michael Robert and Chris “Sam” Samson, of the Adams-based Custom City Cycle shop. Past run beneficiaries include the United Way, the Massachusetts Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and organizations dedicated to multiple sclerosis efforts. Shriners hospitals care for children at no cost to families, and the work accomplished at the hospitals is appreciated internationally. “We have supported other groups,” said Samson. “Then we hooked up with the Shriners and we’ve been with them ever since.” Ron Whitney is a Shriner member and said that the fall runs have become a major revenue source for the hospitals. “It helps keep the hospital going,” Whitney said. “This is a major event for the Shriners.” Robert said that the run grows larger just about every year. This year, riders from regions such as Burlington, Vt. and Hoboken, N.J. made hours-long trips to join the 60-mile ride, which ended at Mohawk Park in Charlemont, Mass.. “We’ve raised quite a bit of money for the Shriners,” Robert said. “Staff meetings [run volunteer coordinators] begin in August. Most of the credit for this goes to the senior staff, people who’ve been doing this since the beginning. People are running their own departments and I don’t have to tell anybody what to do. They know, and it gets done.” The Shriners Hospital provides medical care for a host of conditions, including neuromuscular disorders including cerebral palsy, metabolic bone disease, and scoliosis and other spine conditions. Outreach clinics that travel across the Northeast and to regions including the Caribbean and Cyprus provide evaluations and care to children who cannot easily make a trip to the Springfield hospital. Since it opened in 1925, the Shriners Hospital has delivered medical care to over 42,000 children from around the world –for free. A multi-photograph “Fall Run 2005” slideshow will be posted at www.iberkshires.com during the upcoming week. Additional information about the Shriners Hospital is available at the www.shrinershq.org Internet web site. Additional information about Custom City Cycle and next year’s 25th Fall Run anniversary is available at the www.customcitycycle.com Internet web site or by calling the shop at 413-743-4631. Susan Bush may be reached via e-mail at suebush123@adelphia.net or at 802-823-9367.
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Department Fire Services: Preventing and Dealing with Frozen Pipes

STOW - State Fire Marshal Peter J. Ostroskey said, "We’re about to get some bitter cold weather which brings the risk of frozen pipes. It is important keep a bad situation from getting any worse; many people cause fires trying to thaw frozen pipes."

Tips for Preventing Frozen Pipes

  • When the weather is very cold outside, let the water drip from faucets with pipes in outside walls. Running water through the pipe – even at a trickle – helps prevent pipes from freezing. The temperature of the running water is above freezing.
  • Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warmer air to circulate around the plumbing. Be sure to move any harmful cleaners and household chemicals up out of the reach of children.
  •  Keep the thermostat set to the same temperature day and at night. Don’t lower the temperature at night during the cold spell. It might raise the heating bill a little bit, but can prevent a much more costly repair job if pipes freeze and burst.
  • If you will be going away during cold weather, leave the heat on in your home or business set to a temperature no lower than 55ºF.
  • Shut off outside water.

 

To Thaw Frozen Pipes

  • If you turn on a faucet and only a trickle comes out, suspect a frozen pipe. Locate the area of the water pipe that might be frozen. The most likely places are pipes running against exterior walls or where your water service enters your home.
  • Keep the faucet open. As you treat the frozen pipe and the frozen area begins to melt, water will begin to flow through the frozen area. Running water through the pipe will help melt more ice in the pipe.
  • Apply heat to the section of pipe using an electric heating pad wrapped around the pipe, an electric hair dryer, or wrapping pipes with towels soaked in hot water. Do not use a blowtorch, kerosene or propane heater, charcoal stove, or other open flame devices. A blowtorch can make water in a frozen pipe boil and cause the pipe to explode. All open flames in homes present a serious fire danger, as well as a severe risk of exposure to lethal carbon monoxide.
  • Apply heat until full water pressure is restored. If you are unable to locate the frozen area, if the frozen area is not accessible, or if you cannot thaw the pipe, call a licensed plumber.
  • Check all other faucets in your home to find out if you have additional frozen pipes. If one pipe freezes, others may freeze, too.
  • Be careful using space heaters to warm up areas near pipes. Don’t overload circuits. Plug space heaters directly into wall outlets. Try not to use extension cords but if you must, make sure it is rated for the appliance, and only use one. Heat producing appliances need stronger extension cords than lamps.
  • Remember not to leave the door of a gas oven open; it will produce large amounts of carbon monoxide.
  • Be sure there are working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms on every level of the home.

"Fortunately the weather will warm up in the next few days which will help frozen pipes thaw and prevent additional pipes from freezing," Ostroskey said.

 

Protect Sprinklers Systems

In order to protect sprinkler systems, check on your building during to the cold snap, especially if you don’t have a low temperature alarm. Make sure that all portions of the building remain heated to at least 40°F and not exposed to freezing conditions. Setting the thermostat higher at least 50-60 °F during this cold snap will help make sure pipes in concealed areas stay warm.

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