AUGUSTA — A sleeping Eastern Avenue man was alerted to a fire in his home early Friday morning by smoke detectors and escaped without injury.

The man, who is renting the single-family home at 441 Eastern Ave., was woken up by smoke detectors going off. He called 911 to report the fire, and escaped unharmed, according to Fire Chief Roger Audette.

Damage was limited to about $5,000 and Audette anticipated that the man, whose name he did not have, would be able to return to the home later Friday.

Audette said the incident highlights the importance of having smoke detectors with fresh batteries.

“The smoke detectors alerted him; he was sound asleep,” Audette said. “If he didn’t have those, it could have been much worse. The damage was limited because of the detectors.”

Audette said the fire started at the back of a dryer in the basement. The dryer was running at the time and Audette said the cause of the fire was likely either a problem with the dryer vent or an overloaded dryer.

The cause of the fire is not under any further investigation. No fire departments other than Augusta were called to the fire scene.

Firefighters responded to the fire at 6:20 Friday morning and were clear of the scene by about 7:15 a.m.

Part of Eastern Avenue was shut down for about a half-hour during the fire.

The home is owned by Marcel and Lena Sirois, according to city assessing records. The home is near Rebecca’s restaurant.

Firefighters were at the fire in about five minutes and had it under control within a half-hour, according to the fire chief.

Keith Edwards — 621-5647

[email protected]

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