Bag of rags causes minor fire at Lincoln inn

Posted Feb. 28, 2012, at 2:20 p.m.

LINCOLN, Maine — Spontaneous combustion was blamed for a fire that slightly damaged a shelf in the basement of the Briarwood Motor Inn on Monday night, Fire Chief Phil Dawson said Tuesday.

A bag of rags left on a shelf apparently caught fire and slightly damaged the wood shelf it was sitting on before it was doused by firefighters called to the inn at 223 West Broadway. The incident was reported at 5:15 p.m. Monday. No injuries were reported.

“We believe it was cooking grease or cleaning materials that caused it,” Dawson said.

Workers told firefighters the bag had been sitting there for several days and that they thought they had cleaned the rags thoroughly, Dawson said. The inn was evacuated as firefighters checked the upper floors for fire.

There was some smoke damage, Dawson said.

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