November 21, 2013

Fire destroys Madison mobile home

An electrical fire sparked by a space heater destroyed the home on Preble Avenue this morning.

By Doug Harlow
Staff Writer

MADISON — An electrical fire from a space heater destroyed a model mobile home on Preble Avenue Thursday morning.

click image to enlarge

GONE: Madison firefighters put out the fire that destroyed a mobile home on Preble Avenue on Thursday,

Staff photo by David Leaming

HOME LOST: Mobile home owner Tornia Bowring watches as her home on Preble Avenue in Madison is destroyed by fire on Thursday.

Staff photo by David Leaming

Homeowner Tornia Bowring, 43, said she was moving back into the trailer for the winter with many of her belongings still in boxes and turned on an electric heater to warm up the home.

She said he she left to take a friend to the supermarket and got a call on her cellphone that her home was on fire.

“There was no heat — all we could heat with was electric. There was no furnace,” Bowring said.

Madison Fire Chief Roger Lightbody Sr. later confirmed that a malfunction in the heater was the apparent cause the fire. He said there was no need for the Office of State Fire Marshal to investigate.

Lightbody said the home was destroyed, even though there is a fire hydrant nearby and that he and other Madison firefighters were at the station three minutes away when the fire call came in. Lightbody said the hydrant is the last one on the Preble Avenue water line, where the urban zone of downtown Madison turns into a rural one.

“The building and everything in it is 100 percent gone,” Lightbody said. “It was already all ablaze and it was caved in in the middle when we got here.”

There were no injuries reported. No one was home when the fire started just after noon. There were no pets inside.

Preble Avenue was closed to traffic in both directions for about 90 minutes.

Bowring said she was uninsured and all her belongings in the trailer were lost.

She said she has been through a fire before and will make the best of it.

“I’ll probably go to a friend’s house; I won’t be on the street and neither will the kids,” she said of her grown children and grandchild. “My friends will help me.”

Bowring’s daughter, Kyla, 21, who watched the fire with her two-year-old daughter, said some of her belongings, including toys for her daughter, and items belonging to her aunt also were inside the home.

Doug Harlow — 612-2367dharlow@centralmaine.comTwitter: @Doug_Harlow

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