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Local News

October 25, 2012

Fire claims Dickinson home

DICKINSON — An electrical problem may have caused a fire Tuesday that destroyed an unoccupied home and attached garage at 98 Chase Road. 

Owner Paul Labella had been preparing to move into the summer home when the fire occurred, said Ricky Provost, director of Franklin County Emergency Services, who is also a firefighter and president of the Dickinson Fire Department.

The call came in to Franklin County Fire Control at 11:06 a.m., sending out Dickinson volunteers first. They were quickly followed by mutual-aid units from St. Regis Falls, Brushton, Moira and Bangor.

A crew from Paul Smith-Gabriels Fire Department was on standby at St. Regis Falls to cover any other emergencies during the blaze.

Chase Road, a dead end, is off County Route 5, Church Street and Morrey Road.

Dickinson Second Assistant Chief Andrew Hastings said the wood-frame home was “fully involved from one end to the other” when firefighters arrived.

They did their best, he said, but the house was destroyed.

He said Labella reported the fire, got out safely and then returned to watch the firefighting effort.

Hastings said on Wednesday morning that the cause was still under investigation. County Cause and Origin Investigator Mike McMahon is leading the probe.

Provost said Labella had only a few pieces of furniture in the home, two generators in the garage and a handful of other equipment and tools he was using to finish the construction.

The home, which was less than a year old, relied on generator and solar power and sat about 1,800 feet down a private driveway. The driveway was so narrow fire trucks had a hard time turning around, Provost said. A series of hoses had to be used to get water to the burning building.

The structure was estimated at between 1,500 and 2,000 square feet in size.

Provost said the fire “looks like it’s electrical. It’s not suspicious. But it’s still under investigation.”

The last fire crews from Dickinson reported back in service at their stations at 5:42 p.m., Fire Control dispatchers said.

Provost said Labella planned to move into another home he is building in the area.

— Editor Lois Clermont contributed to this report.

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