Thea Digiammerino

East Hampton Home Destroyed by Fire

A home in East Hampton was destroyed by a fire Saturday morning.

East Hampton Fire Chief Gregg Voelker said crews responded to a fire at 22 Knowles Road in the Middle Haddam section of town around 2:40 a.m. When crews arrived the south end of the house was burning. It took crews around 45 minutes to get the fire contained.

“It was well involved when we got here. I would say about half of the building was already burnt, and then it continued to burn the building because of the wind. Then it just collapsed. The walls came down,” Voelker said.

Five people were inside the home at the time and all escaped uninjured. Fire officials said the occupants made it out because of smoke detectors sounding.

Mutual aid and tanker trucks responded to assist East Hampton firefighters because there are no hydrants in the area. Weather conditions that included high winds, cold temperatures and already icy streets hampered firefighting efforts. Department of Public Works crews came out and put down salt and sand to help deal with the ice.

The home was built in the early 1700s and the fire chief said its construction was part of the difficulty. Despite firefighters’ best efforts, the building was destroyed.

“Some of the older structures, the way they were made back then, it’s much harder to fight those fires because they can get throughout the house very quickly. There’s no sheetrock to stop them from going from room to room,” Voelker said.

The state fire marshal has been called in to investigate the exact cause, but officials do not believe the fire is suspicious.

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