Woodpile too close to chimney cited as cause of Millinocket house fire

Posted Oct. 17, 2012, at 8:40 p.m.

MILLINOCKET, Maine — Firewood stacked too close to a chimney was cited as the cause of a fire Tuesday evening that caused heavy damage to a Winter Street home, the town’s fire chief said Wednesday.

That was the conclusion reached by an investigator from the state fire marshal’s office, Fire Chief Tom Malcolm said Wednesday.

“Wood was piled up against the chimney flue,” Malcolm said, adding that the flue had rusted out in some spots.

According to Malcolm, the fire at 26 Winter St. was reported at 5:27 p.m. by the homeowner, Kelsie Fish. When fire crews from Millinocket and East Millinocket arrived, the one-story house was filled with heavy smoke.

When they entered, firefighters found a fire burning in the basement around a wood boiler and beginning to make its way the chimney chase and extinguished it, he said.

Malcolm estimated damage from the fire at about $60,000. Though most of the fire damage was contained to the basement and chimney chase areas, there was smoke and water damage throughout the house, which is insured, he said.

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