NEWPORT — A garage and all its contents were destroyed Tuesday night after a fire began in a nearby pile of dry leaves and spread to a 2-foot-tall vinyl lattice fence, according to a fire official.

Firefighters were able to stop the flames after they had spread from the garage to the outside of a house 10 to 15 feet away, Chief Jeff Chretien of the Newport Fire Department said Wednesday.

“The guys did a great job stopping it,” he said.

The fire was reported at about 6 p.m. in a residential neighborhood on Elm Street, where homes are close together and if the outside of the garage and house had been vinyl instead of wood clapboard, there would have been a lot more damage, according to the chief.

He said all of the houses in the area are 80 to 100 years old.

The narrow garage contained tools, grills and other items, Chretien said.


The garage and house were being rented, according to Chretien, and the tenant did not have renter’s insurance.

The cause of the fire, which began in the area of a deck where there were many leaves, is being investigated, the chief said.

“It was definitely an outside fire. It was very windy,” Chretien said. “It got into a pile of leaves and spread that way.”

About 17 Newport firefighters responded to the fire, Chretien said. Another 16 firefighters from Corinna and Plymouth also responded, as did the Newport Police Department and Central Maine Power Co.

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