WATERVILLE — The American Red Cross is providing food and shelter to three families that were displaced by a fire Thursday morning at 25 Spruce St., according to a news release from the organization.

The fire, which was reported at 6:30 a.m., displaced four families — six adults and two children — according to local fire officials. The Red Cross is providing food, essentials and a place to stay for seven people that it is in contact with, the release said.

The nonprofit said it also will provide them with financial assistance over the next few days, according to the release.

The state fire marshal’s office has investigated at the scene, but the fire’s cause is undetermined so far, said Waterville fire Capt. Rodney Alderman.

The smoke detectors in the two-story, two-unit apartment house were not working when a fire started in the second-floor apartment, Alderman said, but the four families in the home escaped uninjured.

Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms are required in apartments by state law, but it’s different for two-unit buildings, Alderman said. For a two-unit building, the owner must install working alarms initially, but the renters are responsible for reporting any problems.


The Waterville Fire Department does not inspect two-unit apartment buildings. Any problems with those buildings would be handled by the code enforcement officer, Alderman said.

Edward G. Jurdak Jr., who lives in Winslow, owns the Spruce Street house, Alderman said. He didn’t know if Jurdak has insurance.

The second floor of the home is “pretty much destroyed,” Alderman said. The rest of the home sustained water and smoke damage, but is repairable.

The fire was under control by 7:18 a.m., according to the news release.

The Waterville Fire Department was assisted by the Winslow, Fairfield and Skowhegan fire departments. The Oakland Fire Department covered the Waterville station.

A call to the state fire marshal’s office was not returned immediately.

Madeline St. Amour — 861-9239


Twitter: @madelinestamour

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