SULLIVAN, Maine — A fire off Taunton Drive destroyed a house and spread into the nearby woods Thursday afternoon, according to the local fire chief.
Mike Hiser, chief of Sullivan Fire & Rescue, said that the house at 38 Evergreen Point Road has been vacant for a while but he does not know for how long. He said the owner has been living nearby.
There were no injuries because of the fire, he said.
The fire was reported around 4:30 p.m. by a neighbor, but by the time fire crews arrived the house was in flames, according to Hiser. Black smoke from the fire could be seen from miles around.
“I don’t have any idea right now” how the fire started, Hiser said. “This is one the fire marshal will have to figure out.”
James Manning, who lives next door, said he and his girlfriend were hanging out on his deck when they smelled smoke and then saw it coming through the trees. He said he ran next door to get a look and saw only a little bit of smoke coming out from under the roof.
“It went real fast,” Manning said.
Manning ran back to his house, grabbed a shovel, and tried to fight the fire as it spread through the woods toward his home. He said it got within “about 50 feet” of his house before the fire department arrived and helped him put out the hot spots.
Hiser said he is not sure who the owner or owners of the house are or whether it was insured.
“I haven’t even got to talk to them yet,” he said, standing next to a tanker truck. Neighbors said the house has been on the market for a long time. A for-sale sign was tacked to a tree next to the home’s driveway.
About 25 firefighters responded to the call, Hiser said, including some from Franklin, Hancock and Sorrento. County Ambulance also assisted at the scene.
Hiser said fire crews had the blaze under control within an hour of it being reported.