By LCN staff
Firefighters battle a structure fire on Mills Road in Whitefield Tuesday, Jan. 27. The single-family home was fully engulfed in flames when firefighters
arrived, according to Whitefield Fire Chief Scott Higgins. (D. Lobkowicz photo)
Updated Jan. 28 at 12:50 p.m.
Fire departments from Whitefield, Alna, Jefferson, Windsor, Somerville, Chelsea, and Pittston responded to the scene of a fully involved structure fire at 452 Mills Rd. in
Whitefield Tuesday, Jan. 27.
Whitefield Fire Department was paged to the scene at approximately 4:05 pm. They arrived approximately 10 minutes later, despite the blizzard, Whitefield Fire Chief
Scott Higgins said.
At the time of their arrival, the single family house was fully engulfed in flames. There were unconfirmed reports of eight to 10 individuals inside the house at the
start of the fire, Higgins said.
During the initial stages of the incident, all of the building occupants were safely evacuated, according to EMA Director Tod Hartung.
The Red Cross has been notified and is expected to provide emergency housing and other relief for the victims, according to Hartung.
One individual sustained minor burns to the hands but refused medical treatment, Higgins said. According to early reports confirmed by Hartung, there were four dogs
and two cats inside the structure. It is unknown what the outcome for the pets was.
Delta Ambulance Service and Windsor rescue were dispatched to the scene, primarily to provide warmth for the victims and the firefighters. Firefighters remained at
the scene until approximately midnight.
Higgins said that the house collapsed in on itself and firefighters smothered the flames as best they could before clearing the scene. According to Higgins, the fire
at the house was still smoldering as of Wednesday morning.
Higgins was at the scene Wednesday morning and said an excavator was enroute to knock down the rest of the building. According to Higgins, firefighters were able to
prevent the fire from spreading to neighboring structures.
A nearby house and camper were spared from any damage due to the efforts of the responding fire departments, Higgins said. “Mutual aid is such a valuable resource
for these rural communities,” Higgins said. “Everyone steps up to the plate when the call goes out. We couldn’t do it without them.”
The cause of the fire has not yet been determined. The State Fire Marshall’s Office is expected to arrive at the scene after press time Wednesday to investigate.
A gofundme account, requesting clothing for three children, a young woman, a man, and a woman, was created
Tuesday evening, reportedly by a niece of one of the victims.