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Tilton-Northfield & Franklin firefighters busy

TILTON — A one alarm fire on North Windy Road Wednesday night at 7 pm. brought firefighters from five communities to the mobile home park off Lancaster Hill Road.

Officials said when they first crews arrived at 29 North Windy Road, there was smoke throughout the entire modified mobile home and the captain called for a first alarm to bring support and station coverage.

The home was occupied but no one was home at the time of the fire.

Smoke, heat, and water damage was extensive and is estimated to be $150,000.

"The first arriving crew did an excellent job. They knew exactly where the home was located and were able to plan while responding, resulting in a quick and effective mitigation of the hazard," said Interim Chief Michael Robinson.

Fire officials said they have no reason to this the fire was anything but accidental.

Wednesday was a busy day for firefighters in Tilton-Northfield Fire District and the surrounding mutual aid communities, especially Franklin.

At 4:40 p.m. firefighters from both departments responded to a structure fire on Hill Road in Franklin believed to be electrical in nature.

The mobile home was destroyed by smoke and fire. One Franklin firefighter was cut by glass while venting a window. During the fire, the Franklin ladder truck was requested for a house fire in Boscawen but the department was unable to send it there.

At 7 p.m. both department responded to the above fire.

At 1:05 a.m. yesterday, both departments were summoned to a building fire at 18 Auburn Street in Franklin — a multi-unit Victorian home where it appears a chimney fire extended from a second-floor fireplace into the walls.

The fire was quickly extinguished but one firefighter was injured after slipping on ice in the driveway. Chief Kevin LaChapelle commended everyone involved including the Franklin Highway Department who respond with sand for the ice buildup and police who shut down the road.

While fighting the Auburn Street fire, crews were called to an explosion on Evergreen Avenue in Franklin and responders found a pickup completely engulfed in flames that was near a second car and a house.

The truck was extinguished, the was no damage to the surrounding area, and no firefighters were injured.

Last Updated on Friday, 24 January 2014 02:50

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Matthew Tusi accepts sentence of 2 1/2 years to 5

LACONIA — A city man was sentenced to serve 2 1/2 years to five years in prison last week after pleading guilty to three counts of possession of narcotic drugs.

Matthew Tusi, 30, had been arrested on Aug. 7, 2013, after a Belknap County Sheriff's deputy stopped his vehicle on Union Avenue.

Tusi ran, was tasered, and later transported to Lakes Region General Hospital for evaluation. Laconia Police and an off-duty Gilford Police Officer participated in his arrest.

Before he went to trial, attorney Robert Hemeon had argued there was no probable cause for the sheriff's officer to stop Tusi as he had broken no traffic rules. Had he prevailed, all of the drug evidence later recovered from Tusi and his car would have been inadmissible.

After a suppression hearing in which the deputy testified, Judge James O'Neill ruled that the entire encounter he had with Tusi, including a conversation the two had while Tusi was dropping money off to someone at the Belknap County Jail, created enough probable cause to justify the stop.

With the drug evidence admissible at trial, Tusi chose to accept a plea bargain that will see him serve a minimum of 2 1/2 years in the State Prison.

O'Neill accepted Tusi's negotiated plea on Jan. 16. Tusi was given credit for 163 days served.

Last Updated on Friday, 24 January 2014 02:35

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City cut election expense by using paper ballots

LACONIA — City Manager Scott Myers said yesterday that the decision of City Clerk Mary Reynolds to use paper ballots counted by hand rather than voting machines will trim the cost of conducting the special election for the Executive Council in District 1 by 25 percent.

Prompted by the unforeseen passing of longtime executive councilor Ray Burton, the cost of the special election — both the primary election earlier this week and the general election scheduled for March 11 — was not included in the 2013-2014 budget adopted in June. He estimated the cost of a citywide is approximately $8,000, with the cost of printing the electronic ballots and programming the voting machines amounting to some $2,000.

Anticipating that relatively few ballots would be cast and could be counted by hand in a timely manner, Reynolds chose not to deploy the voting machines, which reduced the cost of this week's primary election by about $2,000. Myers said the same procedure will be followed in the general election, reducing election expenses of $16,000 to $12,000.

Last Updated on Friday, 24 January 2014 02:31

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Gilford fireworks ban will stay in place at least through public hearing on Feb. 12

GILFORD — Selectmen decided Wednesday night that rather than creating a new fireworks town ordinance that would allow fireworks under certain situations they would continue with an outright ban – pending the outcome of a public hearing scheduled for two weeks.

The reason for the public hearing on February 12 is that the current board does not believe the ban enacted by the 1988 Board of Selectmen was thoroughly vetted through the public.

The vote to continue with the existing ban until the public hearing was not unanimous, with Selectman Gus Bevevides voting against the status quo.

Benevides is of the opinion that banning fireworks puts an additional burden on the police who have to "drop what their doing" and respond to fireworks complaints.

Benevides also said that most people in Gilford or who visit Gilford as tourists and/or as summer residents, don't know the town has a ban.

He said fireworks are legal to own in New Hampshire and, with some restrictions and penalties for non-compliance, in his opinion they should be legal to have and to use. He said would not support reaffirming the existing ban unless the general public overwhelming voices their support for continuing it.

The subject was first broached at the board level two weeks ago when Fire Chief Steve Carrier and a fireworks expert from the N.H. Fire Marshals Office presented a suggested revision to the ordinance that would allow them in town with some restrictions.

Last Updated on Friday, 24 January 2014 02:28

Hits: 260

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