ROCKPORT, Maine — The man who died in the early morning fire at a Rockport motel on Monday is 53-year-old Kevin Stanley, according to reports from the State Fire Marshal’s Office.
Fire investigators say smoking is the likely cause.
“The fire started in the victim’s room on his mattress and Stanley was a heavy smoker,” said Stephen McCausland, a spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.
Seven other motel rooms were occupied and no other motel guests were injured, he said.
“Stanley’s room was gutted by the fire and the two adjoining second-floor rooms were badly damaged, as was the roof of the motel and there was extensive water damage,” McCausland said. “Stanley had lived at the motel for about a month. The motel had working smoke detectors which alerted other occupants.”
About a dozen displaced guests huddled outside the Schooner Bay Motor Inn on Route 1 Monday afternoon as fire investigators and insurance adjusters surveyed the damage.
Tony Cocco, a guest at the motel, said he was sleeping in room 117 just below the unit that caught fire sometime around 2 a.m.
“All I heard was the [fire] alarms go off,” he said.
Cocco said that he and others did not evacuate immediately.
But alarms were triggered about an hour later, he said, and a guest of the motel began knocking on everyone’s door and alerting them to get out.
The Rockport Fire Department got the call at 3:24 a.m., according to Chief Jason Peasley. He said that 17 firefighters from Rockport were assisted by mutual-aid crews from Camden, Hope, Lincolnville, Rockland and Warren. The fire was extinguished about an hour later.
Peasley said that Camden police Officer Paul Thompson was one of the first responders to the scene and kicked in the door to the second-floor room where the man who died was staying. He got the man outside and performed cardio-pulmonary resuscitation on him, with the help of another guest, but the effort to save the man did not succeed.
Fire crews also responded to the motor lodge on Nov. 8, when a 4-year-old lit a mattress on fire with a lighter, Peasley said. Firefighters dragged the burning mattress outside to put the fire out, according to the Penobscot Bay Pilot, and the fire was confined to a first-floor guest room. No one was injured in the November fire, Peasley said.