WATERFORD, Maine — The Waterford Mallard Mart, which was destroyed by an electrical fire Feb. 21, will be rebuilt, according to owner Ed Michaud.
According to Waterford Assistant fire Chief Tom Murch, the fire was caused by an old ceiling light fixture. “Someone left it on, and it caught fire,” Murch said.
There was an upstairs apartment in the 40- by 60-foot building. The occupant was at work at the time of the fire and lost everything.
The building was aging. Before Michaud, it was owned by Ed Packard, who ran an auto repair business there in the 1950s and 1960s. Michaud said the building was a total loss, and he intends to rebuild it on the site as soon as possible.
The building was insured, Michaud said. Michaud owns the Mallard Mart chain, which includes three other locations in Norway, West Paris and Bethel. He said most of the six Waterford employees are now on unemployment, as the other three stores are fully staffed. He said he’s keeping on the manager from the Waterford store.
“We have a lot of great employees,” Michaud said. “We hope to bring them all back.” He said ideally, a new store at the Waterford site would be built and operating by summer.
Six fire departments responded to the blaze and fought it for hours, blocking traffic between Waterford and Stoneham. It was Waterford’s only gas station.