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Moped is believed to be connected to downtown fire

September 04, 2005|By Andrew Schotz

Authorities believe a moped kept in the basement of a West Washington Street building is connected to a fire there Friday morning.

The moped is not connected to Hagerstown Reproductive Health Services, an abortion clinic that also uses the building at 154-160 W. Washington St., Hagerstown Assistant Fire Marshal Richard L. Miller said in a news release Saturday.

Miller said the fire was in a basement storage room used by tenants of apartments in the building.

The damage was estimated at more than $50,000.

Firefighters from Hagers- town and Funkstown responded to the call about 9:40 a.m.

Community Rescue Service and Washington County's air and rehab units also went, along with the Hagerstown Fire Marshal's Office, Hagers- town Police and the Maryland State Police Fire Marshal's Office.

Three federal agencies - the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives - responded as well.

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The fire received the attention of state and federal agencies because the abortion clinic is in the building, Miller said.

Firefighters and others who responded stayed on the scene for five hours. Miller said the fire went into the walls of the three-story building, which hampered firefighting efforts.

The cause still was under investigation.

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