Firefighters quickly doused a fire at 17 Weymouth Street in Richmond this afternoon that belongs to Tim Acord, who was home at the time the fire broke out and ran out the door when the smoke alarms sounded. The house sustained significant damage but is structurally sound. The cause is undetermined. DARCIE MOORE/THE TIMES RECORD

Firefighters quickly doused a fire at 17 Weymouth Street in Richmond this afternoon that belongs to Tim Acord, who was home at the time the fire broke out and ran out the door when the smoke alarms sounded. The house sustained significant damage but is structurally sound. The cause is undetermined. DARCIE MOORE/THE TIMES RECORD

RICHMOND — Five local fire departments rushed to a house fire on Weymouth Street this afternoon and got the fire under control before the three-story home was destroyed.

Richmond firefighters responded to the structure fire at 17 Weymouth St., at 3:25 p.m. today. Richmond Fire Chief Matt Roberge said when he arrived, fire was coming out of a side and front window on the second floor where the fire started.

The home belongs to Tim Acord, who was home on the first floor at the time the fire started in the house he said he built about 10 years ago.

Firefighters drew water from a hydrant and mixed water with foam to extinguish the fire, because the foam covers the fire better than water, Roberge said, and attacked the fire on the second floor. He estimated firefighters had the fire knocked down with 15 or 20 minutes, so “it was a good knockdown.” As he approached the scene, he saw smoke from a distance and called a second-alarm fire and called for a ladder truck from Gardiner Fire Department. Bowdoinham, Bowdoin and Dresden fire departments also responded.

Acord was in the laundry room downstairs when “all the smoke alarms started going off and I came out and started going up the stairs and when I was eye-level with the floor, I saw the flames.” He said he grabbed a laptop he’d almost tripped on and ran out the door.

“I haven’t got a clue,” as to what started the fire, Acord said. He wasn’t cooking anything, he said, and had just microwaved a cup of coffee about five minutes before the fire broke out.

The house, he said, he built to resemble a ship on the inside: “It’s so cute!” And now, “it’s nasty looking in there.”

He said the home is insured.

Neighbors and friends of Acord, who has owned the adjacent Main Street Dairy Treat on Main Street for about 20 years, gathered around him tonight and offered to help him in any way possible, and his brother Chris Acord came. Acord, who lives in the home alone, said he was just glad his grandson, who is often with him, wasn’t at his house today. He was able to go inside and retrieve some clothing that wasn’t destroyed. Meanwhile, Richmond firefighters mopped water and foam out the front door and from one of the garage bays.

An investigator from the state fire marshal’s office arrived on scene around 5 p.m. At around 7 p.m., Roberge was about to clear the scene and said there were several factors that may have caused the fire that couldn’t be pinpointed, so the official cause of the fire has been labeled undetermined.

Roberge said the house sustained significant surface damaged but the home can be repaired and the structure is sound. The most damage was to the second floor and heat, smoke and water damage to the other floors. No one was hurt.


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