Fire damages secluded home in Freeport

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FREEPORT — A July 25 electrical fire at 5 Balsam Lane was put out in time to save the home, but sent one firefighter to the hospital with minor injuries.

Despite previously published reports of two injured firefighters, Deputy Chief Paul Conley on Monday said only one firefighter was injured. He was treated for heat exhaustion at the scene before being taken to the hospital.

Conley said the firefighter made a quick recovery and returned to work the following day.

According to Conley, the house received $175,000 in damages, but that assessment is expected to increase.

Firefighters arrived at the scene just before 1:30 p.m. Friday after a caretaker noticed smoke coming from the basement. According to Conley, the family was away for the weekend. The caretaker was unharmed.

He said the basement and the stairs leading to the first floor were on fire when firefighters arrived. The basement suffered the bulk of the damage and the first and second floors of the home received smoke damage.

Because of the home’s seclusion, crews could only have two trucks on the scene. There were also no nearby fire hydrants, forcing firefighters to shuttle water.

The multiple-alarm fire was the result of electrical issues, Conley said, although the specific cause is still under investigation. Three alarms were sent not because of the size of the fire, but because firefighters had to rotate out due to the extreme heat.

Firefighters from Yarmouth, Bath, Falmouth, Cumberland, Brunswick, Topsham, Lisbon, North Yarmouth, Durham and Pownal responded to the scene or provided mutual aid coverage.

Conley said crews left the scene just before 5 p.m.

Kate Gardner can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or kgardner@theforecaster.net. Follow her on Twitter: @katevgardner.

Sidebar Elements


Firefighters found smoke coming from the basement when they arrived at Balsam Lane in Freeport on Friday, July 25.

The closest location for a temporary water source was approximately 1,500 feet from the residence on Balsam Lane in Freeport. Tank trucks and firefighters from several departments kept the water flowing.

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I'm a reporter for The Forecaster covering Freeport, Yarmouth, Chebeague Island, and Cape Elizabeth. I'm from a small town in NH no one's ever heard of. When not reporting, I can be found eating pasta and reading books, often at the same time.