Fire investigators believe that a malfunctioning electrical circuit caused the three-alarm fire that destroyed a house at 38 Columbia Road on Monday morning.

The Portland Fire Department’s investigators determined the fire was accidental and may have been the result of improperly installed electrical components.

“Any improperly installed, maintained or overloaded electrical system could present fire hazards,” said Chief Jerome LaMoria. “Any electrical work should always be performed by a qualified and licensed electrician to ensure safety.”

The fire was reported at 9 a.m. by someone who was passing by the house. The single occupant in the house was able to get out unharmed.

One firefighter suffered a leg injury but returned to work later in the day.

One engine from the Portland Fire Department was already deployed helping out at a fire in Falmouth, so LaMoria called for a third alarm summoning all available firefighters working in the city at that time.

The interior of the building was destroyed in the fire.

David Hench can be contacted at 791-6327 or at:

dhench@mainetoday.com

Twitter: @Mainehenchman