Carroll County Digest

CARROLL COUNTY DIGEST

February 25, 2003

Two boys hurt in fire in garage at their home

Two brothers were flown to Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center yesterday after they were seriously injured in a flash fire in the garage of their home near Gamber, fire authorities said.

The 11- and 14-year-old boys, of the 2800 block of Greenleaf Way, were burned on the upper halves of their bodies, said Clay Myers, public information officer for Gamber & Community Fire Company. The garage contained flammable liquid, two motorcycles and two all-terrain vehicles, he said.

The cause had not been determined, said Myers and K. Arthur McGhee, a deputy state fire marshal at the scene. They refused to name the injured boys.

The boys ran next door to the home of a neighbor, who called 911, McGhee said.

The one-alarm fire was contained in 10 to 15 minutes, with damage to the garage and smoke inside the brick and frame split-level house, Myers and McGhee said. In addition to the Gamber firefighters, units from Reese, Westminster and Winfield responded.

Cracks in foundation of school deemed no threat

Pupils returning yesterday to Oklahoma Road Middle School in Eldersburg after a week of vacation time and snow days were kept in the cafeteria for nearly two hours after the building supervisor noticed cracks in the school's stonework.

Concerned that the fractures might indicate structural damage from snow and rain, Carroll County school officials sent for a structural engineer about 8:40 a.m. He arrived at the school about an hour later, and by about 10:15 a.m., the engineer had found no structural damage to the building, said Raymond Prokop, the school district's facilities director.

"Because of the snow and rain and temperature differentials, the combination of those have caused some cracks in the masonry," Prokop said. But the cracks were superficial and not in any structures that support the school, he said, posing "no threat to the building."

With a two-hour delay yesterday morning because of lingering concerns about icy roads, school officials hoped to have the problem addressed before children began arriving for the 10:35 a.m. start of school. But they did not, and pupils were sent to the cafeteria -in a different end of the building, away from the cracks - while the area of concern was examined further and cleaned up, Prokop said.

Mount Airy man, 18, charged in abuse of girl, 8

An 18-year-old Mount Airy man whose application to be a state police cadet led to a sex offense investigation has been charged with abusing an 8-year-old girl, authorities said yesterday.

Scott E. Seal, 18, of the 2500 block of Penn Hill Road became the subject of an investigation after he submitted to a polygraph examination as part of his application to the state police, authorities said. The investigation showed that the girl, who is an acquaintance of Seal's, had been "inappropriately touched" late last year, state police said.

The incident occurred in the girl's home, while her relatives were in the house, police said.

Seal was being held at Carroll County Central Booking, pending a hearing before a District Court commissioner, police said. The man was not hired by state police.

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