ST. ALBANS — Fire officials believe a Saturday afternoon blaze that leveled an abandoned home on Grant Road was set.

The fire was called in just before 2 p.m. on Grant Road near the intersection of Ballard Road, Fire Chief Jason Emery said Monday. Emery said the one-and-a-half story house was engulfed in flames when his crews arrived. He said there were footprints in the deep snow leading to and from the house.

Sgt. Kenneth Grimes of the Office of State Fire Marshal said the fire has been classified by investigators as intentionally set. He said the investigation continues, but there is little evidence to sift through because of the extent of the fire damage.

“It was an abandoned house that someone went up and torched,” Emery said, noting there appears to be no motive in the fire. “I want to say it was torched — there was no power or electricity and nobody has lived there for 20 years that I know of.”

Emery said the house was so far gone that he could not detect the smell of an accelerant or see any signs of where the fire started.

“It was caving in when I got there,” he said.

He said the house was 250 feet off the road with no plowed driveway. Emery said crews trudged through snow up over his knees to get to the fire, so whomever set the fire had to work hard to get the job done.

Doug Harlow — 612-2367

[email protected]

Twitter: @Doug_Harlow

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