A fast-moving fire Saturday tore through a large commercial garage on Harmony Road in Athens, destroying the building and its contents, but firefighters were able to save two adjacent buildings and a lot of equipment.

The wood-framed building with metal siding destroyed at Linkletter & Sons Inc. was about 60-by-100-feet in size and the company’s main garage used for working on trucks and equipment, according to Athens fire Chief Brett Strout. A crane used to put logs on trucks, as well as tool boxes, oil, parts and tires in the building also were destroyed.

“The building’s a total loss,” Strout said later Saturday, adding that firefighters were able to save two buildings 3 feet away that housed a wash bay and mechanics’ garage.

Strout said the cause of the fire, reported at 9:20 a.m., is undetermined.

“It’s not suspicious,” he said, adding that the Office of State Fire Marshal is expected to arrive Monday or Tuesday to help determine the cause.

Twelve fire departments responded to the blaze at 115 Harmony Road, including from Athens, Harmony, Cornville, Madison, Skowhegan, Hartland, St. Albans, Canaan, Anson, Solon, Cambridge and Wellington. Fairfield was asked to come with an extra ladder but it was determined not to be needed after all so Fairfield was turned back, according to Strout.


Anson-Madison-Starks Ambulance and Harmony Regional Ambulance Service stood by at the scene, but no injuries were reported, according to Strout.

He said Linkletter & Sons had excavators and cranes that were used to help at the scene, and some men stopped to help move equipment away from the fire.

“They heard about it and they showed up,” Strout said. “I want to say they moved three tractor trailers, a de-limber, another crane carrier and a bucket loader. They helped us gain access to the fire and save the equipment.”

Strout said the wind Saturday caused the fire to move fast, driving smoke across the road, but the wind was in firefighters’ favor when it came to their efforts to protect equipment near the building.

Harmony Road had to be closed down for a time during the fire, he said.

Firefighters remained at the scene until between 1:30 p.m. and 2 p.m., according to Strout, who said he believes the building was insured.

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