Blaze destroys house, leaves family of four homeless

A single-family home was destroyed by fire Sunday, leaving a family of four homeless.

The Standish Fire Department said the single-story ranch dwelling was engulfed in flames by the time firefighters arrived, just before 4 p.m.

The family, whose name was not available, was not at home when the fire broke out. They are being assisted by the American Red Cross.

The home is on a road called Meadowbrook One. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.


Woman slightly injured in Maine Turnpike mishap

A woman whose car crossed over three lanes of traffic on the Maine Turnpike before it went off the road and grazed a tree suffered minor injuries Sunday night.

State trooper Edmund Furtado said Mary Berger, 68, of Bremen was heading north near Exit 36 in Saco when a car in the lane next to her swerved toward her car to avoid hitting another car that was merging into traffic from the on-ramp.

Berger’s 2000 Volvo convertible then went across three lanes of traffic before coming to rest beside the highway. Her car did not hit any other vehicles. Berger “was very lucky,” Furtado said.


Youth centers rate highly, earning division a top grade

The Maine Department of Corrections said its Juvenile Division has won the highest grade from a national organization that looks at safety, security, programs and other areas in corrections systems.

The Performance-based Standards organization, in its 2012 ratings, gave Long Creek Youth Development Center in South Portland a level 4, the highest PbS level.

Only 6-12 percent of the participating sites nationally get this rating.

The Mountain View Youth Development Center in Charleston achieved a level 3, a rating achieved by about 30 percent of participating sites.


Maine islands’ population rises 6 percent since 1990

A new report on Maine’s 15 island communities shows that the islands’ population has increased about 6 percent since 1990. The Rockland-based Island Institute’s “Island Indicators” report provides a detailed look at indicators that affect Maine’s year-round island communities.

The report said the population grew by nearly 12 percent on Casco Bay islands and by a little over 5 percent on Penobscot Bay islands between 1990 and 2011. It fell by 8 percent on eastern Maine islands.


Turtle-crossing road signs going up in three towns

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and The Nature Conservancy are installing signs to warn motorists of endangered-turtle road-crossing locations in Wells, South Berwick and York with the hope of reducing road deaths of two of the state’s rarest species.

Spotted and Blanding’s turtles are both protected under Maine’s Endangered Species Act.


Afternoon ATV accident injures child, two adults

A child and two adults were injured in an ATV crash on Saturday.

Maine Game Wardens said Paul Boucher, 68, of Lewiston was operating an ATV on Madagascal Pond Road, with his 11-year-old granddaughter and 3-year-old grandson as passengers, when he swerved to avoid an oncoming ATV.

The ATV rolled over and the three were trapped under it. The 11-year-old got free, and as she and another ATV operator, Rachel Dorais, 41, of Biddeford, tried to help, another child at the scene grasped the accelerator of a parked but running ATV, and it ran over Dorais and the 11-year-old, the warden service said.

The injured were taken to Penobscot Valley Hospital in Lincoln and were expected to fully recover.

– From staff and news reports