Wood stove blamed for fire early Easter morning

12 years ago

Wood stove blamed for fire early Easter morning

By Kathy McCarty

Staff Writer

    CASTLE HILL — A wood stove is being blamed for a fire early Easter morning that caused extensive damage to a home on the Haynes Road.

    The Mapleton, Castle Hill and Chapman Fire Department received a call of a structure fire at 44 Haynes Rd. The call was placed through 9-1-1 at 1:24 a.m. by the owner, Ronald Campbell Sr., who stated his house was on fire and he was having a hard time finding his way out.

    “When the first unit arrived on scene, the owner was outside and told them his cat was still inside. Captain Geoff Skidgel was the first officer on scene and reported a working fire with no entrapment,” said Fire Chief Richard Wark.

    Wark said one end of the home was fully involved, with heavy fire venting out through the roof when firefighters arrived.

    “Crews entered but were pulled out initially when several home oxygen tanks blew up and fed the fire. Firefighters were able to go back in and bring the fire under control and stop it from advancing,” Wark said.

    A large garage and a small storage building located within 10 feet of the residence were not damaged. Firefighters were unable to save the owner’s cat, which perished in the fire.

    “One end of the home was destroyed by fire and the other sustained heavy heat and water damage, making it a total loss. The home was fully insured,” said the chief.

    An investigator was called in from the Maine Fire Marshal’s Office to look for a cause. Due to the extensive damage in the area where the fire originated, Wark said it was difficult to find an exact cause, however “all indications did point to the wood stove that was being used to heat the home.”

    Wark’s department received mutual aid from the Washburn Fire Department at the scene, while the Presque Isle Fire Department provided station coverage. Approximately 25 firefighters responded to the fire from the three departments and the last crews left the scene around 5:30 a.m.

    “There were no firefighter injuries. The owner was transported by Crown Ambulance to The Aroostook Medical Center to be evaluated for smoke inhalation and minor burns to his hands,” said Wark.

    Crown Ambulance sent a second unit to provide medical coverage at the scene and Maine Public Service Company assisted with removing the electrical service to the home.