Firefighters work to vent the roof after flames spread to the attic area of a Shore Road residence on Aug. 17. The fire marshal’s office determined that the improper disposal of smoking materials sparked the fire. ISLANDER PHOTO BY MARK GOOD

Fire blamed on smoking

SOUTHWEST HARBOR — The careless disposal of smoking materials is the cause of a structure fire last week on the Shore Road, according to Chief Jack Martel of the Southwest Harbor Fire Department.

Martel said State Fire Marshal John Wardwell conducted his investigation on Friday, the day after fire damaged the top floor of a building at 92 Shore Road. The second story of the building owned by Carlisle Landel consists of living quarters and is rented out seasonally during the summer months and to a local family for the remainder of the year.

The fire was reported at about 5:20 p.m. Southwest Harbor firefighters were on the scene almost immediately, followed by departments from Tremont, Mount Desert and Bar Harbor.

“The top front of the building was in flames,” Martel said in describing what he saw when they arrived. “We were able to knock that down.”

However, flames had spread into the attic. Firefighters were forced to cut vent holes in the roof and tear down the ceiling in part of the home.

Firefighters were able keep the flames from spreading into the back of the unit.

“It was pretty well contained to the front side of the building,” Martel said.

Martel said the people renting the unit had gone out for a few hours and returned to find the building on fire. The damage was extensive enough to make the top floor unlivable.

“I expect it’s repairable,” Martel said.

The ground floor of the building is garage space and used for storage, Martel said. Vehicles and the personal items of the local family were among the items being stored. Some water leaked through from above; firefighters were able to cover most of the items to minimize any damage, Martel said.

Firefighters had the fire extinguished and were clearing the scene about 90 minutes after the fire was reported.



Mark Good

Mark Good

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Mark Good

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