TEMPLE — A lighting strike earlier in the week likely caused an electrical fire that destroyed a barn and two vehicles Sunday afternoon and damaged a nearby home, injuring a firefighter inside when a ceiling tile collapsed, fire officials said.

Jarod White, who suffered a minor neck injury in the ceiling collapse, was among the more than 20 firefighters who responded to the barn fire on Maxwell Road about 4 p.m., according to Temple fire chief David True.

White, 20, and several other firefighters entered the two-story house while other crews outside doused flames engulfing the barn, separated from the home by a driveway and about 15 feet, True said.

As White and two other firefighters climbed a flight of basement stairs, a sheetrock ceiling panel fell on White, possibly because it was saturated with water, True said. He had minor neck pain and an ambulance took him to Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington, where he was treated and released later Sunday, True said.

Because the fire destroyed the barn, Grimes said, the extensive damage prevents investigators from determining an official cause. There was a lighting strike near the barn earlier in the week, however, and the homeowner told investigators there had been some electrical problems following the strike, he said.

Theresa Nye, who owns the 25 Maxwell Road home and barn, noticed smoke pouring out of the barn Sunday afternoon and called 911, True said. She lives with four other adult relatives at the home, which is not insured.

Six area fire departments responded to the emergency call, with several pumper trucks tapping a water hydrant about a mile and half down the road to supply fire engines battling the fire, True said.

Flames spread from the barn to a pickup truck and car parked in the driveway, destroying both vehicles, he said. A recent addition built on the home had repairable fire and heat damage.

True said the focus was on saving the house because the fire had already engulfed the barn and cars when firefighters arrived.

The mutual aid emergency call brought fire departments from Farmington, Wilton, Strong, Industry and Jay to assist Temple Fire Department. Chesterville was also on standby at the Farmington fire station.

David F. Robinson — 861-9287

[email protected]

 


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