Tag Archives: Maine

Gardiner, ME – Sprinkler system activated for fire in apartment building; No injuries reported

A small fire that started in a Maine Avenue apartment Monday shortly before 5 a.m. was put out by the building’s sprinkler system.

Gardiner Fire Chief Rick Sieberg said the tenant in the third-floor apartment apparently knocked into a stove, turning on a burner that ignited some nearby paper products and caused a small fire up the wall, which activated the sprinkler head.

The Maine Office of State Fire Marshal is investigating the fire.

“Having that sprinkler system is like having the fire department in your apartment 24/7,” Sieberg said. “The amount of property and lives that can be saved by that sprinkler system is enormous.”

Sieberg said the Gardiner firefighters who responded turned off the sprinkler.

This is the third time in the last decade the sprinkler system has extinguished a fire in that building, which is located several hundred feet from the site of a fire in July 2015 that destroyed 235 Water St. and damaged buildings on either side of it.

Sieberg said damage to the unit was minor, and no other unit was affected. No one was hurt.

Scarborough, ME – Sprinkler system activated for fire at collision center; No injuries reported

No one was hurt when a fire broke out at Moody’s Collision Center in Scarborough on Monday.

Crews were called to an all-hands fire at the business on Pleasant Hill Road around 12:40 p.m.

The building took only minor damage thanks to the sprinkler system, which put most of the fire out.

Officials said the fire started in the paint booth.

We’re expecting more details from fire officials.

Portland, ME – Fire at high school contained by sprinkler system; No injuries reported

A fire that broke out early Sunday morning on the third floor of Westbrook High School was contained by an internal sprinkler system and by firefighters who scaled ladders to gain access to the classroom where it originated.

The sprinkler system at the unoccupied Stroudwater Street school activated, preventing the fire from spreading from the classroom to the rest of the wing, the Westbrook Fire Department said in a news release posted on its Facebook page.

Fire crews manning Engine 4 encountered heavy smoke and fire coming from the third floor upon their arrival. The fire was reported at 4:59 a.m. Firefighters entered the building and were able to quickly locate the source of the fire.

Engine 4 positioned the truck ladder to connect to the third floor. A hose line was stretched across the ladder and crews on the inside used the hose to bring the fire under control. Photos posted on Facebook show two exterior classroom windows that had to be broken to gain entry. The exterior walls of the classroom were charred by the heat.

An investigation revealed that the cause of the was electrical in nature, likely due to the improper use of an extension cord with a window air conditioner, according to the fire department.

The fire department received mutual aid from the South Portland Fire Department, the Portland Fire Department and the Gorham Fire Department. Falmouth and Scarborough sent units to cover the city’s fire stations.

No injuries were reported.

Bar Harbor, ME – Sprinkler system activated for fire at laboratory; No injuries reported

Shortly after 9:12 p.m. on Tuesday, the Bar Harbor Fire Department arrived at The Jackson Laboratory to investigate a fire alarm call coming from the laboratory.

Bar Harbor Fire Department Chief Matthew Bartlett said on Wednesday that the department responded as they normally do for a fire alarm call but soon realized there was an actual fire. “As our crew entered the building, they found the fire burning in the location. Our crew radioed back saying they had found fire in the building with sprinkler flow,” which, said Bartlett, prompted a call for additional resources.

That call brought the Mount Desert Fire Department, Southwest Harbor Fire Department, Ellsworth Fire Department and Northeast Harbor Ambulance Service to the scene. Bartlett said the Trenton Fire Department and responders from the Somesville Fire Station provided standby coverage.

“Mutual aid departments were not needed, so they were quickly released,” he said.

Though many departments were called, only about five or six responders entered the building.

“Our crew had to go in and put out the fire that the sprinkler system couldn’t fully extinguish,” said Bartlett, adding that it was primarily the contents of a shelving unit that caught on fire.

Around 10:30 p.m., the flames were doused and the departments cleared the scene.

All the research mice and employees were found to be safe.

The lab’s Executive Vice President and COO Catherine “Katy” Longley said that the lab community is grateful to the local fire departments and emergency personnel for their swift response. “We are thankful that all employees are safe,” she said.

On behalf of the fire department, Chief Bartlett said he was also appreciative of what the lab’s crew did Tuesday night to help the emergency personnel. “It was a team effort between The Jackson Lab and ourselves. Their staff did a great job in helping us get to where we needed to be,” said Bartlett.

“We got a fire alarm, the sprinkler system activated, we went down to investigate, found a little fire burning and luckily we were able to get in there and put the remaining fire out. The system worked as it was just designed to do.”

Rockland, ME – Fire sprinkler controls dryer fire at assisted living facility

Rockland’s fire chief said a fire that broke out Monday night at the Woodlands Memory Care facility shows the importance of a sprinkler and alarm system.

The fire at the Camden Street facility was one of two fire calls within five hours of each other early Sept. 29.

The first was at Woodlands, reported to the department at 1:21 a.m.

The caller reported a fire in one of the commercial dryers. Upon arrival, there was smoke coming from the laundry area in the rear of the building. The initial crew was able to rapidly determine the issue was contained to the laundry area and that the smoke and fire was not extending into the occupied portion of the facility, Chief Chris Whytock said.

The Woodlands staff moved all residents to their “shelter in place” areas.

The crew then made entry to the laundry and found a small fire in one of the gas-fired commercial dryers, which was being contained by the building sprinkler system. The fire was quickly extinguished and the sprinkler was shut down after determining the fire had not spread from the dryer. The smoke was then cleared from the affected portion of the building and all mutual aid units were sent back to their towns.

Rockland crews remained on scene for a short time removing water from the laundry room and restoring the building alarms systems.

The fire was determined to have been caused by oily cooking towels being in the dryer after washing had not removed all the oil

The chief said the on duty staff at the Woodlands did an excellent job rapidly notifying the fire department and moving their residents to pre-established safety areas.

The sprinkler system contained the fire to the dryer utilizing just one sprinkler head. This coupled with the fire alarm system releasing self-closing doors kept multiple barriers between the smoky fire area and the occupied section of the building just down the hall. Due to the staff, sprinklers, and alarm system no residents were displaced and the incident was concluded in less than one hour.

Portland, ME – Fire at Jewish Museum put out by fire sprinklers

Firefighters are investigating a fire at the Maine Jewish Museum in Portland.

It happened late Thursday afternoon.

Crews found smoke throughout the building.

Firefighters say the sprinkler system put the fire out, but there is a lot of water damage.

Crews say fire erupted behind the chapel area of the second floor, but exactly where it started and how is still under investigation.

Augusta, ME – Fire sprinklers extinguish fire at hair salon after hair vacuum caught on fire

A fire that started in a hair vacuum at a Bangor Street hair salon was largely extinguished by the building’s sprinkler system.

The Bangor Street Barbersalon, one of multiple businesses located at 10 Bangor St., sustained minor fire damage but more extensive water and smoke damage from the fire reported at 11:41 a.m. Wednesday.

Battalion Chief Steve Leach said a vacuum unit at the business, used to suck up hair that has been cut, caught on fire. The building’s sprinkler system kicked in and had the fire all but out when firefighters arrived.

“The operating sprinkler system put the fire out prior to our arrival. It was smoldering when we got there, it did its job,” Leach said. “There was no damage to any of the other businesses.”

The building, which Leach said is owned by Mike Karagiannes, is also home to Aubuchon Hardware.

Firefighters were on the scene for about two hours. Leach said the salon will need repair work before reopening.

The 11,944 square-foot building, according to city records, was built in 1923 and is assessed, for tax purposes, at $571,000.

Farmington, ME – Malfunctioning ceiling fan fire put out by sprinkler system at rehabilitation & living center

A fire at Edgewood Rehabilitation & Living Center displaced more than three dozen residents and employees Sunday afternoon, according to the Farmington Fire Department.

Fire Chief Terry Bell said the fire, reported at about noon, was likely caused by a malfunctioning ceiling fan in one of the living center’s bathrooms.

Bell said more than 40 people were evacuated from the building at 228 Fairbanks Road. They were taken to Mt. Blue High School, also in Farmington.

The Franklin County Regional Communications Center posted on its Facebook page that staff from Edgewood, Northstar Ambulance, Regional School Unit 9 and several fire departments had set up at Mt. Blue High School to provide care for the Edgewood residents.

The fire was knocked down at about 1 p.m., according to Bell.

“The sprinkler system did its job and put most of the fire out,” he said. “Unfortunately, there was a good amount of damage to the building, from the fire and the water used to put it out.”

Augusta, ME – Third-floor apartment fire mitigated by sprinkler system; No injuries reported

Fire Chief Roger Audette said the quick response from city firefighters — and an operational sprinkler and alarm system — subdued a potentially dangerous fire downtown on Monday.

The fire at 227 Water St. was reported by an alarm around 4:40 p.m. Monday. Firefighters closed down a portion of Water Street until about 5:45 p.m.

There was heavy smoke on the third floor, Audette said, but it was not visible from the street.

He said the fire started in a third-floor apartment’s closet after rags, coated with a combination of wood stain and polyurethane used to finish hardwood flooring, “spontaneously combusted” because they were not disposed of properly.

Audette said the fire was not suspicious.

“It was in a bad spot,” he said. “It could have gone up into the attic, (where it would have been more difficult to fight).”

Audette said a sprinkler head in the closet kept the fire down until crews could extinguish it completely. He said there was “quite a bit of damage” to the building, as well as water damage to some electrical systems.

No one was hurt in the fire.

The building, which contains Guerrette Properties and other businesses, is owned by Smithtown Four LLC, according to city tax records. Representatives from Guerrette Properties did not return a request for comment by presstime.

Crews from Gardiner, Chelsea and Hallowell offered station coverage while Augusta crews were on the scene.

Code Enforcement Officer Keegan Ballard said the city uses the National Fire Protection Agency Life Safety Code, as recommended by the state fire marshal’s office. He said the code does not require sprinklers in buildings explicitly. Ballard said fire protection standards for buildings are done on a case-by-case basis.

“New mixed-use occupancies are required to have a sprinkler or fire separation,” he said. “It really depends on the use (of the building) or if the floors above are utilized.”

Ballard said the city relies on separation between residential buildings to mitigate the risk of large fires engulfing multiple structures. In a downtown area where buildings are connected, he said, fire safety protocols are much more important.

“It’s absolutely very important,” Ballard said of using the standards. “In a downtown where there’s no separation, it’s crucial … to buying time for emergency services to get there.”