Smoke but no fire

SOUTHWEST HARBOR — Dark smoke and ash coming from the chimney of a Clark Point Road house prompted a phone call to the fire department from a couple of fishermen last Wednesday (Jan. 5).

The call came into the department around 10:30 a.m. after the fishermen noticed the smoke from the water and were concerned there may be a chimney fire at the home.

According to Fire Chief Tom Chisholm, a large wood boiler used to heat the home may have had a blockage in the chimney. No one was at the address when the call was made. Members of the volunteer department were able to enter the house to determine there was no fire.

When they took the temperature of a pipe from the boiler leading to the chimney it was around 400 degrees. It had cooled significantly by the time fire crew members left.

“They system was working in its normal operation when we left,” said Chisholm.

In addition to checking inside the home, volunteer firefighters stretched out the ladder from their truck to check the chimney from the outside.

“We used 104 of it’s 107 feet,” said Chisholm, noting the department has the longest ladder truck on Mount Desert Island. “This was a very tall building with several different roofs.”

He suspected the dark cloud of smoke came from the chimney coughing to clear its throat due to the blockage. While there was no immediate emergency, Chisholm gave kudos to those who made the call.

“If anything, it shows that neighbors are looking out for each other,” he said.

Sarah Hinckley

Sarah Hinckley

Former Islander reporter Sarah Hinckley covered the towns of Southwest Harbor, Tremont and neighboring islands.

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