NEW VINEYARD – A Route 27 camp that had been abandoned for more than 10 years burned Wednesday morning.

The New Vineyard fire department was called out around 11:30, after a passerby saw heavy smoke coming from the cabin, fire Chief Doug Churchill said Wednesday.

Firefighters from New Vineyard, Strong and New Portland responded. When they arrived they found sheds behind the cabin destroyed and the house on fire.

They were able to save about half of the small camp, but Churchill said there is so much damage inside that it should be categorized as a total loss. “I don’t believe the building was insured,” Churchill added.

Wanda Churchill, the fire chief’s wife, said Wednesday she thinks the house was un-numbered since it had been unoccupied for so long.

Because it had sat empty and was without electricity, the fire marshal was called in to investigate the cause of the blaze. Doug Churchill said Wednesday the cause will remain undetermined.

The camp’s owner had not been located by Wednesday evening.

Fred Leeman, who owns an engine repair shop next to the burned-out camp, said he was coming home when he saw the smoke, and was surprised to find a fire blazing right next to his property.

“Too close for comfort,” he said.


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