WINSLOW — A fire that destroyed a log cabin-style home nearly a week ago off China Road had started in a garage near an outdoor wood boiler, an investigator determined.

However, the exact cause of the Jan. 13 fire is still unknown and has been listed as undetermined, according to Sgt. Ken Grimes, of the state fire marshal’s office.

The fire that tore through the garage and attached home of Richard Liberty at 1178 China Road drew more than two dozen firefighters from several towns and forced traffic detours around the area for more than four hours. The one-story home, about 1.25 miles from the China line, is on the north side of the road, also known as Route 137.

The blaze left the family, two dogs, a cat and a rabbit homeless.

“The area of origin is in the garage, in the vicinity of an outdoor wood boiler,” Grimes said Thursday. “Also in the area of origin was a supplemental electric heater. Because of the extent of damage, we can’t tell which, or if, either one of those are the issue, so it’s officially listed as undetermined.”

State fire investigator Ken MacMaster inspected the site Tuesday, according to Grimes, who said the fire spread from the garage to the house and both were destroyed.

Capt. Waylon Capp, of the Winslow Fire Department, said he is not sure if the home is insured. Attempts to reach family members were unsuccessful, but a relative posted a request for help for the family at an online GoFundMe page.

Capp said the animals, including a Yorkshire terrier and a chocolate Labrador retriever, all were rescued from inside the house and are doing well.

“We got all the animals out,” Capp said Thursday. “They were seen at Hometown Vet (in Fairfield) and released, and they’re all doing good.”

Firefighters from Winslow, Waterville, Albion, Vassalboro, China and China Village battled the blaze, which broke out around 3 p.m. Jan. 13. The fire also destroyed a car parked in the driveway on which was a veteran’s license plate. Firefighters pumped water out of a pond about 3 miles west of the fire scene on Route 137 to use for fighting the fire.

Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]

Twitter: @AmyCalder17

filed under: