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‘Stubborn’ fire burns home in Union Mills, displacing one resident, fire officials say

Dozens of firefighters from two counties converged on a burning home just north of Union Mills Homestead that left one resident displaced Monday morning.

An older, wooden-frame, two-and-a-half story home caught fire in the 3300 block of Littlestown Pike late Sunday, according to Charlie Simpson, public information officer for Pleasant Valley Community Fire Company. The homeowner was not present when the fire started, but a neighbor called 911, Simpson said. A lieutenant of Gamber and Community Fire Company passing through the area was able to get there quickly, saw the fire at 11:45 p.m. and requested additional support, Simpson said.

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More than 50 firefighters from about 10 different departments in Carroll County and Adams County, Pennsylvania, sent volunteers, who knocked the blaze by 12:02 a.m. Monday, according to Simpson. Firefighters remained until about 2:30 a.m. cleaning up and ensuring the fire would not reignite, Simpson said.

There were no injuries, he said. The Office of the State Fire Marshal estimated the value of the loss at $50,000, plus $25,000 worth of contents, according to a notice of investigation.

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A representative of the fire marshal was on the scene the night of the fire then returned later Monday morning for reports of smoke rising from the rubble, but Simpson said it turned out to be steam.

The cause of the fire is under investigation, according to Emily Witty, a spokesperson for the fire marshal. The fire started on the first floor of the home at an entryway to a crawl space, Witty said. Smoke alarms were present in the home, according to the notice of investigation, but it wasn’t clear if any had activated.

One occupant was displaced by the fire, Simpson said, but they did not request help from the American Red Cross because the homeowner had another place to stay.

“There was enough damage that they were not able to stay in that structure last night,” Simpson said.

According to Simpson, the age of the home and the wooden frame made the fire difficult to fight.

“The fire was stubborn because of the type of structure,” he said.

Anyone with information about the fire may call the Arson Tip Line at 1-800-492-7529 or the Northeast Regional Office of the fire marshal at 410-836-4844.

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