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Hospital helipad temporarily reopened

September 21, 2007|By ANDREW SCHOTZ

Washington County Hospital temporarily reopened its helicopter landing pad Wednesday, five weeks after it was closed for repairs.

The pad will have to be shut down again, possibly at the end of next week, while a polyurethane coating is applied, hospital spokeswoman Nicole Jovel said Wednesday. The coating couldn't be added until 14 days after the concrete was poured, which happened Thursday, she said.

The polyurethane application will close the pad another seven to nine days, Jovel said.

Helicopters taking patients to and from the hospital have been landing at the U.S. Army Reserve Center at East Franklin and Willard streets, about a mile away.

Each time, a Community Rescue Service ambulance crew and a Hagerstown Fire Department crew must respond.

The hospital is paying CRS for an extra crew - one driver and one paramedic - as long as the helipad is closed, CRS Assistant Chief Dave Hays has said.

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Hays said Wednesday that CRS has responded to 38 helicopter landings at the Army Reserve site.

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