A Fort Fairfield family is scrambling to recover after a fire over the weekend severely damaged their home on U.S. Route 1A. 

Photo credit: David Shaw


Fort Fairfield Fire Chief Mike Jalbert tells us the call came in shortly after noontime Saturday from a passerby reporting a fire at the Miller residence, at the intersection of Up Country Road.  The Fort Fairfield Fire Department responded and received mutual aid from Easton, Presque Isle, Mars Hill and Caribou Fire Departments.

The fire appears to have started when the family was shoveling coals out a window, which caught some debris on fire and spread into the house, Jalbert said.  The family and neighbors quickly removed belongings to save what they could from the flames.

Photo credit: David Shaw

Route 1A was closed for about 3 1/2 hours as thick smoke blanketed the area.   Chief Jalbert said 40 firefighters worked to bring the blaze under control.  There were no injuries to the family or the firefighters. Crown Ambulance, Fort Fairfield Police and U.S Border Patrol were also on the scene Saturday afternoon.

There was severe damage to the Miller's home, including extensive smoke and water damage.  It has not yet been determined if the home was a total loss.  Chief Jalbert says he will return to the Miller residence Monday to get an update.  The family has been working to tear out the charred sections of the house in hopes of rebuilding.