Two displaced, Hope Valley home damaged following Saturday night fire on Main Street

Two displaced, Hope Valley home damaged following Saturday night fire on Main Street

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HOPKINTON — Two people were displaced following a Saturday night fire that heavily damaged their Main Street home.

Firefighters from Hope Valley-Wyoming, Ashaway, Richmond-Carolina, Charlestown, North Stonington and Exeter were each called to 844 Main St. shortly after 8 p.m. to reports of an active structure fire, according to officials. The first responder arrived by car and found that the home, located along Route 3 in Hope Valley, was fully engulfed in flames with the blaze showing from the second floor and roofline.

Those living in the house, at least one adult and one child, were not injured and were already out of the home by the time firefighters arrived, according to Hope Valley-Wyoming Fire Chief Justin Lee.

“It was full engulfed and there were no hydrants, so Richmond-Carolina and Ashaway tankers were used to bring water to the scene. We were able to quickly contain the fire and it was knocked down completely in about 30 minutes,” he said.

According to Lee, crews were able to use two lines in order to attack the blaze, while a third crew attempted to attack the fire from inside. The third crew eventually ceased their attack when the second floor showed compromise.

“An interior attack was made until the second floor started to collapse,” Hope Valley posted on the agency’s Facebook page. “The fire was knocked down within 30 minutes, but overhaul kept companies on scene until just after 11 p.m.”

The cause of the fire has not been determined, Lee said, but it is not considered suspicious. 

The home, a two-story single family house that was built in 1973, is owned by Leah K. Benjamin, according to town GIS records. It was purchased by Benjamin in July 2015.

Members of the American Red Cross assisted following the blaze, which caused significant damage that left the home uninhabitable, and provided resources to the two people impacted, the organization said Monday.

The victims, who were not identified, were provided with a comfort kit, recovery envelope and other materials. They were also assisted in finding temporary housing, officials said.

Lee praised the efforts of his volunteers and surrounding departments, many who found themselves in the middle of a near non-stop weekend after the community was battered by high winds and heavy rain on Friday. During that 24 hours prior to the fire, Lee said his agency had responded to approximately 50 other calls for service. 

“I’m very proud of these guys and what they’ve done,” Lee said Monday. “Whether its our guys or those in surrounding towns, we all depend on each other regularly and when manpower is as stretched as it was, given the outages and flooding, we wouldn’t have been able to contain the blaze without the help we got from everyone involved.”


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