FAIRFIELD — Fire destroyed a Winter Street house Tuesday night, leaving one man homeless, according to Fire Chief Duane Bickford.

Chris Robert lived alone in the 1 1/2-story wood-frame house at 20 Winter St. and was home when the fire broke out, Bickford said.

“It’s a total loss,” Bickford said as he was clearing the scene at 9 p.m. “Right now, it appears accidental. There were a couple of candles going and the owner was in the cellar. Smoke detectors were in good operating condition and he came up (from the cellar), noticed the fire and called 911.”

Firefighters got the call around 6 p.m., Bickford said.

“When we arrived, the west side of the building on the first floor was fully involved,” he said.

About 35 firefighters from Fairfield, Waterville and Winslow worked at the scene and Clinton firefighters stood by at the Fairfield fire station, he said.

Bickford said it was a difficult fire to fight.

“We had to knock it down from the outside of the building before we could go in,” he said. “He’s (Robert) been doing some renovations, so we had to dig quite a bit.”

Winter Street is located off the old Lower Main Street and formerly was called Ricker Street, Bickford said.

The home was insured, according to Bickford, who said he did not have Robert’s age, but that he is a young man.

“He’ll be staying with his mother tonight,” he said.

Bickford said the state Fire Marshal’s Office was called, and a representative from that office will be at the scene Wednesday morning to help determine the fire’s cause and origin.

“There’s nothing suspicious,” he said.

Bickford said it is unknown in what room the fire started.

Police controlled traffic at the scene, Central Maine Power Co. closed off electricity to the house and Delta Ambulance workers stood by, he said.

“The Red Cross was here, so he (Robert) has been in contact with them,” Bickford said.


Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]

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