WENDELL, Mass. (WWLP) – Firefighters from several Franklin County towns were called to a fire that destroyed a home in the town of Wendell just before 2:00 Wednesday morning.
By sunrise Wednesday, all that remained of the house was a chimney and pieces of one wall. The house is a total loss.
Orange Fire Chief Dennis Annear told 22News that a man came home to his house on Davis Turn Road to see that his neighbor’s home was on fire. Fortunately, the owner of the burning house was not home at the time, and no one was injured.
Chief Annear told 22News that as many as eight nearby fire departments sent help. New Salem, Montague, Turners Falls, Erving and Athol were among the communities providing mutual aid.
Chief Annear said the additional pumper trucks were needed, because there were no fire hydrants near the burned house. Several tanker trucks rotated through to pump water from 1000 feet away to reach the fire.
He said that when Wendell’s Fire Department first got there, they were able to contain the flames and save the barn next to the home.
The chief said that the cold temperatures were also a challenge Wednesday morning. Firefighters were able to warm up in a rehab truck that is provided by the state and run on a volunteer basis.
Firefighters are expected to return to the home later Wednesday to monitor for smoldering debris that could re-ignite. The state fire marshal’s office is looking into what caused the fire.