Maine Flash Report for July 16, 2013

Thursday, 7/4 – Augusta (Kennebec County) Multi Family Fire. An early evening fire forced six families from their apartments and sent some firefighters to the hospital with heat related issues. The fire is believed to have started due to lightning striking the front of the apartment. All 14 people evacuated safely, but some pets were lost in the blaze. The Augusta Fire Department called the Red Cross for assistance; Red Cross volunteers Debbie Tondreau, Sue Goddard, Brenda Sawyer, and Frances Szady responded to the scene and worked with the clients to ensure that all immediate needs, both physical and mental health related, were met. The Red Cross provided assistance for food, clothing, and lodging. The Red Cross continues to work with the clients in their effort to find alternate housing.

Thursday, 7/4 – Standish (Cumberland County) Single Family Fire. An early morning electrical fire destroyed a mobile home and most of the contents in the home. As smoke filled the house, the two people living there were alerted by the family dog and were able to escape safely. A short time later, the home was fully engulfed in flames. The Standish Fire Department called the Red Cross for assistance; Red Cross volunteer Michelle Danois met with the family to assess their immediate needs and to discuss the family’s recovery plan. The Red Cross provided the family with comfort kits and assistance for food and clothing. The family does have homeowner’s insurance and will be contacting them.

Thursday, 7/4 – Etna (Penobscot County) Single Family Fire. A man was left homeless on July 4th when a fire of unknown origin leveled his two story home while he was at work. Only his barn was left standing. Red Cross volunteer Jennifer DeGroff responded (to her first solo case). The Red Cross provided assistance for clothing, shoes, food, and bed linens.

Friday, 7/5 – Sangerville (Piscataquis County) Multi Family Fire. Bad wiring started a fire that destroyed a mobile home under renovation, as well as the adjacent trailer where friends were living at the time. Red Cross volunteer Brenda Moody responded; the Red Cross provided assistance with housing, food, clothing, and Disaster Mental Health for the home owner, as well as food, shoes, clothing, and bed linens for the friends. Health Services volunteer also Mairead Stein provided assistance.

Friday, 7/5 – Winterport (Waldo County) Single Family Fire. A cooking fire destroyed a home where two adults and five children lived. Luckily, no one was hurt. Red Cross volunteer David St. Louis responded, as well as his mentoree, Trevor Oplinus who was responding to his first case. The Red Cross provided assistance with clothes, shoes, and food for seven people.

Friday, 7/5 – Topsham (Sagadahoc County) Multi Family Fire. A grease fire destroyed the kitchen of a second floor apartment and caused significant water damage to the first floor unit. The tenant left the kitchen for just a moment, only to return to fire running up the kitchen walls. The Topsham Fire Department called the Red Cross to help the two families affected by this sudden disaster. Red Cross volunteer Judy Hamer contacted the two families immediately, then met with the families to assess their disaster caused needs. The Red Cross provided assistance for food, clothing, and lodging for three nights. The Red Cross continues to collaborate with the families and provide housing referral information.

Monday, 7/8 – Waterford (Oxford County) Single Family Fire. A clothes dryer caught fire, causing major damage to a mobile home that a family was renting. The tenants were not home at the time of the incident, but were later provided Red Cross contact information. Red Cross volunteer Megan Goddard met with the family at a local coffee shop and was able to help the family start with their recovery plan. The Red Cross provided assistance for food and clothing. Comfort kits and referrals were also provided. The family plans to stay with relatives for the short-term. The family had suffered a similar disaster about twenty years ago.

Monday, 7/8 – Bangor (Penobscot County) Multi Family Fire. A multi unit fire started early in the morning in Bangor. Reports indicate a malfunctioning refrigerator as the cause. Due to the weather and the number of clients, the Red Cross office was opened at 5:00 am and casework began. Red Cross volunteers David and Debbie St. Louis were the first on scene. Red Cross volunteer Bud Walkup was also called in to support the casework at the office. Coffee, snacks, food, clothing, lodging, and health services were provided for the clients. One client is staying with friends. Because of the quick response, the Red Cross processed all clients by mid afternoon.

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