Firefighters respond to two Friday morning fire alarms

Posted:  Friday, August 15, 2014 - 10:45am

Within  a matter of minutes, Boothbay Harbor firefighters responded twice to reported fire alarms Friday morning. The first call  was received at 8:42 a.m. from the Rocktide Inn on Atlantic Avenue. A guest reported a dryer ignited in the laundry room.

Three Boothbay Harbor trucks responded to the blaze along with 2-3 more from Boothbay, and Southport also responded, according to Boothbay Assistant Fire Chief Scott Sutter Jr.

The guest used a fire extinguisher to contain the blaze to one machine. The firefighters used a heavy hose to dose the blaze and it was out within 5-10 minutes, said Sutter.

“A guest filled the dryer with a large load of rags and set the timer for too long a time,” Sutter said. “We cleared the smoke out of the room and the floor. The dryer is a total loss, but the other one next to it is just fine. It’s still running.”

Emergency officials evacuated the building while the fire fighters extinguished flames.

“I’m not sure what happened. We heard the alarm a few minutes ago and then everyone was told to go outside,” said Joanne Muise, of North Andover, Mass., a Rocktide Inn guest. “The only thing I heard was that it started in the laundry room.”

As firefighters began leaving the scene, they received a second call at 9:26 a.m.

A possible electrical fire at the Saint Andrews Gregory Wing on Emory Lane was reported. A “strong electrical smell’ inside the building prompted an employee to call 9-1-1. Boothbay firefighters searched for the electrical problem using thermal equipment and gas meters.

The firefighters didn’t find any problems during a 45-minute search. Boothbay Fire Chief Nick Upham isn’t sure what caused the problem. One possibility is that the smell emanated from “expended meds.”

“Just before we got the call, a truck driver used a bad smelling barrel to pick up some expended meds,” Upham said. “We found nothing, and really couldn’t smell anything either. The smell dissipated so we think it was caused by the barrel, but we’re really not sure.”

No one was reported injured in either incident, according to Boothbay Harbor fire department officials.