May 22, 2018
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East Orland home damaged by fire; two dogs rescued

By Rich Hewitt, BDN Staff

EAST ORLAND, Maine — A fire heavily damaged a home on Back Ridge Road on Thursday morning.

No one was at home at the time the fire started, but a passer-by saved two dogs from the burning home.

Mary Jo Norris said she was passing the home on the corner of Back Ridge Road and Violette Drive when she saw smoke coming out of the windows and doors. There was no one around, so she called 911 and went to check the house. When she knocked, there was no answer.

“I tried the knob and it was open,” Norris said. “When I opened it, there were two dog noses sticking out.”

Norris said she let the dogs out and then went to round them up.

“They were excited to get out,” she said.

Norris was able to get one dog, a husky, into the garage. The other, a medium-size black dog, would not go in, so she walked the dog around the area until someone was able to take care of it.

The fire heavily damaged the single-family home, which was rented by Audrey Joy. When firefighters arrived, there was heavy smoke throughout the building and fire on the first floor.

A crew from Central Maine Power Co. was in the area and already had disconnected the power when firefighters arrived, according to Orland Fire Chief John Gray.

“There was fire in the first floor and it had extended to the second floor,” Gray said. “We were able to get it knocked down quickly. We had good mutual-aid response. We tapped four towns and they responded within 10 to 12 minutes.”

It appears that the fire started in the front first-floor room, although Gray said they had not determined what had caused the fire. There was heavy fire damage to two rooms on the main floor and minor fire damage to the second-story floors. There was a lot of smoke and water damage throughout the house, he said.

No one was injured in the fire.

Crews from Bucksport, Surry and Penobscot joined Orland’s to fight the fire under the mutual-aid agreement among the towns. A crew from Orrington covered Bucksport’s station while those firefighters were on the scene.

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