Area emergency departments kept busy battling small fires


Emergency personnel from the River Valley area were kept busy Monday afternoon responding to a series of fires.

Mexico firefighter Marc Mayo said the current fire threat is Class 4, which can more easily lead to brush, grass and other fires.

The Rumford, Roxbury and Mexico fire departments and Med-Care Ambulance Service were called to the Roxbury Road residence of Edgar and Odett Carrier for an early afternoon chimney fire.

Roxbury Fire Chief Ray Carver said the fire had begun to enter the interior walls but was caught in time. No structural damage was caused, although about $1,000 cosmetic damage was.

The Roxbury department was just finishing up when another call came in for a fire on the Backkingdom Road in Mexico.

There, at a grassy lot just over the Thad White Bridge that connects Dixfield and Mexico, several fire departments, including those from Peru, Dixfield, Mexico and Rumford, as well as Med-Care, and police officers from Dixfield and Mexico, responded to a woods fire apparently started by a campfire.

Mexico Fire Chief Gary Wentzell said apparently a homeless man had been living there for several days.

Med-Care director Dean Milligan said the unnamed man was taken to Rumford Hospital for observation because of his prolonged exposure to the weather.

Wentzell said a 200- by 200-foot patch of woods and brush were burned.

“It looked like he had been cooking,” said Wentzell.

Mexico police officer Mike Grenier said a rifle and ammunition were also taken from the scene.

Wentzell said reports had also come of a woods fire on the No. 6 Road in Byron. The Byron Fire Department responded to that call.

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