Andover barn, ell destroyed by fire

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ANDOVER — Fire destroyed an Andover barn and damaged an attached home in a blaze that required the efforts of fire departments from six communities Monday evening. No injuries were reported.

State Fire Marshal investigators believe the fire at 203 Upton Road was caused by two children playing with matches or a lighter, Andover Fire Deputy Chief Elaine Morton said. The children, ages 8 and 10, live nearby and were in the barn when the fire began, she said.

Andover firefighters were called to the scene for reports of a grass fire, but smoke was rolling out of the barn when Morton got there shortly after 5 p.m., she said.

The fire destroyed the small barn and an ell between it and the home owned by Kathy and Patrick Donegan, Morton said. The Donegans do not live there year-round, she said.

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Four rooms of the home may be salvageable, Morton said, but the kitchen area near the ell was badly damaged. “It was pretty extensive,” Morton said.

The home sustained water and smoke damage, according to Andover volunteer fire Chief Robert Dixon, who responded to the blaze while working as a member of the Rumford Fire Department.

Fire departments from Andover, Rumford, Mexico, Peru, Dixfield and Newry responded to the blaze, as well as Med-Care ambulance services. Firefighters put out the blaze within an hour, but stayed until 10 p.m. fighting hot spots, Morton said. Firefighters will continue to monitor the building overnight, she said.

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