NEWPORT, Maine — A fire destroyed a local tavern Tuesday morning in a blaze that took dozens of firefighters all day to extinguish.
DC’s Bar and Grill, located just outside downtown Newport on U.S. Route 2, was spewing thick smoke from under its eaves at about 9 a.m. when the first fire crews arrived, said Newport Emergency Services Director Amanda Chretien. The bulk of the flames were doused quickly, but the building continued to smolder for most of Tuesday.
At about 6:30 p.m. — some three hours after most firefighters left — a Newport truck was returning to extinguish a flare-up, said Lt. Adam Noyes of the Newport Fire Department.
Noyes said extensive fire damage in the ceiling and eaves, along with smoke and water damage throughout the building, probably rendered the structure a total loss. Among the damage is a collapsed ceiling in the bar area.
“I don’t believe it’s salvageable,” said Noyes.
No one was injured in the fire.
Departments from Pittsfield, Detroit, Corinna and Dexter responded to the alarm. Dexter brought a ladder truck in order to reach flames in the upper reaches of the building, said Chretien. A fire crew from Plymouth and an ambulance from Sebasticook Valley Hospital were on standby. Noyes said that at the height of the blaze more than a dozen firetrucks were at the scene.
Noyes and Chretien said Tuesday evening that they did not know what caused the fire. Investigators from the State Fire Marshal’s Office were at the scene for several hours Tuesday.
State Fire Marshal’s Office Sgt. Ken Grimes said Tuesday night that investigators had determined that the fire started in the second floor of the building but were “unsure about the cause.” Grimes said the fire remains under investigation and that he hoped to talk to more witnesses today.
The building, which is owned by Doug Starbird, was in the process of being sold, according to Newport Town Manager James Ricker. The woman planning to buy it, Kris Kurro, was granted liquor, victualer and entertainment permits on April 7 by the town’s Board of Selectmen. Ricker didn’t know whether the sale had gone through yet, but he said Kurro had yet to pick up her permits at the town office. Neither Starbird nor Kurro could be reached for comment.
Ricker said the building has been operating under the DC’s name since 2006, when Starbird purchased it.
Noyes and Chretien commended a crew that is repairing sewer lines on Elm Street for facilitating quick passage for firetrucks through the construction zone.