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Ashfield driver faces charges after vehicle strikes pole in Sunderland, cutting power and closing road

Thursday, November 20, 2014

AMHERST — A 22-year-old Ashfield woman is being summoned to court on several motor vehicle-related charges after the Jeep she was driving at the intersection of Sunderland Road and Route 116 struck a utility pole early Thursday morning, police said. The woman, who was not at the scene of the crash when police got there at 1:57 a.m., is being summoned on charges of leaving the scene of a property …

House fire on North Main Street in Sunderland draws firefighters from seven towns

Thursday, November 20, 2014

SUNDERLAND — A house fire downtown drew firefighters from Sunderland and six other departments Wednesday night. The fire broke out at 127 North Main St. just after 9 p.m. Residents evacuated, and reported heavy smoke in the front of the home. The road was closed to traffic in both directions, with fire trucks and ambulances lining the street. Firefighters tore into the porch’s …

State will replace 105-year-old bridge in East Deerfield

Thursday, November 20, 2014

EAST DEERFIELD — A dilapidated bridge that crosses over the railroad tracks on McClelland Farm Road, which was last rebuilt in the 1950s, will now be replaced. At a public hearing Tuesday in the Deerfield town offices, representatives from the Massachusetts Department of Transportation presented their plans for the $4.5 million project to …

Second brother from Springfield sentenced to probation in Belchertown sex assault case

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — A 25-year-old Springfield man was sentenced to two years probation Wednesday after accepting a plea agreement and avoiding a trial on child rape and indecent assault and battery charges. Robert D. Edwards Jr. pleaded guilty in Hampshire Superior Court to committing unnatural and lascivious acts with …

Valley Medical Group in Florence evacuated when heating system produces smoke

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Northampton — Smoke pouring out of a heating system turned on for the first time this year at the Valley Medical Group, 70 Main St., Florence, prompted the evacuation of the building for about 15 minutes Wednesday morning. …

Sunderland Elementary School playground improvements complete

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

SUNDERLAND — Students at Sunderland Elementary School who donned their coats and hats and headed out to recess last week were met with a pleasant surprise — the new playground is up and running after a remodeling project …

No injuries as tractor-trailer rolls onto side on Interstate 91 in Deerfield

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

DEERFIELD — A tractor-trailer rolled onto its side in the left lane of Interstate 91 southbound Monday night. The accident was reported to Massachusetts State Police at 8:50 p.m., and the highway was cleared at 11 p.m. once the truck was righted. There were no injuries. State police …

Forest owner raises concerns about potential alternate route to Tennesee Gas Pipeline

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

As Massachusetts environmental officials negotiate with Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. about alternatives to its main proposed route across Massachusetts, one private forest owner has raised concerns that a new alignment to avoid state-owned conservation land could jeopardize his own protected timber land. The recently announced “Article 97 Avoidance …

River walks and paddle created by the Mill Ri er Greenway Initiative

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Here are the river walks and one paddle created by the Mill River Greenway Initiative. ■ Downtown Northampton I: Paradise Pond to Old South Street ■ Downtown Northampton II: Old South Street to Hockanum Road ■ Bay State Village: Paradise Pond to the Cutlery Building ■ Florence I: …

Mill River Greenway Initiative helps protect watershed, preserve artifacts and improve ecological health

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

As rivers go, the 13.5-mile-long Mill River is relatively small, and it inconspicuously flows along often unnoticed except when it periodically floods. But this little river has some big stories to tell. The Mill River Greenway Initiative is …

State audit reports continuing elevator inspection backlog, lost revenues; public safety officals cite 'great progess'

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — A new state audit finds that a persistent elevator inspection backlog put the public at risk and contributed to potentially more than $3 million in lost revenue in the commonwealth. The review by state Auditor Suzanne …

Merger planned for veterans service districts in Franklin County

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

GREENFIELD — With a merger of Franklin County’s two veterans’ service districts nearing, local veterans may soon have an easier time navigating state and federal benefit programs. Tim Niejadlik, the director of the Veterans’ Services Resource and Referral Center in Greenfield, said a board consisting of representatives from …

District attorney’s Safe School Summit focuses on positive learning environment

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

HOLYOKE — Charles D. Appelstein does not believe there is such thing as a “bad kid.” “I think any kid who wants to do something violent really doesn’t want to do it,” said Appelstein, a youth-care specialist from Salem, New Hampshire. He said he believes that most of …