Even though damage was not visible Tuesday from the outside, this home at 35 Boutelle Ave. in Waterville was damaged by a fire the previous night. Firefighters said two adults and five children were displaced by the blaze. Amy Calder/Morning Sentinel

WATERVILLE — Seven people, including two adults and five children, were displaced Monday night in a house fire at 35 Boutelle Ave., officials said.

“It’s accidental and it originated on a stove,” Fire Chief Shawn Esler said Tuesday, adding that it started as a cooking fire associated with hot oil.

“The primary damage was to the kitchen but there is smoke damage throughout the entirety of the floor,” he said. “The kitchen is completely destroyed, based on the photos that I saw.”

The home, owned by Bethany Burns, was rented out to a family, according to Esler. He said the kitchen is on the first floor of the two-story building.

One of the tenants sustained minor burns on their hands, Esler said, and that person was evaluated at the scene and did not go to a hospital.

About 20 firefighters from Waterville, Winslow, Oakland, Fairfield and Skowhegan responded to the fire, which was reported at 4:49 p.m. Monday, according to Esler.


“Crews arrived shortly thereafter to find fire and smoke visible from the first floor windows,” he said. “They struck a second alarm, which brings in our mutual aid partners. … Our crews immediately made entry after determining that everyone had made it safely out of the building. They were able to extinguish the fire almost immediately.”

Firefighters continued to search the building and confirmed no one else was inside, so they shifted into overhaul mode to make sure hot spots in the area were extinguished, according to Esler. Firefighters left the scene at 6:21 p.m., he said.

Boutelle Avenue is in a residential neighborhood and the road stretches from Main Street to North Street.

Esler said the tenants called 911 quickly after the fire started and the fire department responded quickly, which resulted in the fire being contained to the kitchen, with minimal damage to the rest of the building and surrounding structures.

“We contacted the (state) Fire Marshal’s Office, not because this was a suspicious fire — just because there was a minor injury, and the Fire Marshal’s Office advised us that we were all set to conduct the investigation,” he said.

The police department and Delta Ambulance also responded to the scene, he said.

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