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Rotary, FairPoint chip in for signs to help emergency crews

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Rotary, FairPoint chip in for signs to help emergency crews

SCARBOROUGH — Drivers along Black Point, Broadturn, Payne and other busy Scarborough roads may notice new signs appearing over the next few weeks.

The Scarborough Rotary Club and FairPoint Communications have teamed up with the police department and Police Explorers program to install house numbers along the roadside to help emergency personnel quickly locate homes.

"We had an interest in participating in a local project," said Rotary Club President Richard Murphy.

When the Rotary Club members met with the police department and heard that emergency personnel were having difficulty locating homes due to a lack of house numbers, they quickly decided to take on the project.

The Rotary Club, well-known in town for its annual Christmas tree sale, applied for a $1,200 grant from Rotary International and also asked FairPoint Communications to assist with purchasing supplies for the project.

"Our role is to help connect people," said FairPoint Spokesperson Jeff Nevins. "This seemed logical. We would be helping connect emergency responders to people who need help."

FairPoint donated $1,000 toward the project. The Rotary Club then went to work designing, ordering and assembling the signs for the project. Each of the 100 signs is a foot tall and six inches wide, and has a number and the Rotary insignia printed on it. The numbers vary, depending on the road, but generally increase by factors of 50 along the side of the road.

"This lets emergency crews know that if they're looking for house number 120 and they see the sign for 100, they're almost there," said Murphy.

The Scarborough Police Explorers are charged with installing the signs, many of which are already up.

Murphy said the Rotary Club doesn't currently have plans to purchase more signs, but if the emergency crews decided they needed more, it was certainly something they would consider.

"For a small club, we do quite a bit," he said.

Emily Parkhurst can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or eparkhurst@theforecaster.net