Fire destroys Searsburg home

SEARSBURG — Authorities are investigating a fire that destroyed a Bishop Road home early Monday morning.

No one was injured in the fire, which is not considered suspicious, according to Det. Sr./Sgt. Thomas Williams with the Vermont State Police Fire Investigation Unit. The case remains under investigation.

The Wilmington Fire Department responded to a reported structure fire at 20 Bishop Road in Searsburg at about 5 a.m. on Monday, according to a news release from Williams. When firefighters arrived, the rear and second floor, including the roof, was fully involved.

The fire was knocked down by members of numerous surrounding departments that provided mutual aid. Wilmington Fire Chief Scott Moore requested the Vermont State Police Investigation Unit to investigate the origin and cause.

Williams investigated with Detective Sergeant Steven Otis, DFS Investigator/State Fire Marshall Joshua Maxham

and members of the Vermont State Police Arson K9 Accelerant Detection Team.

The fire is believed to have been caused by the failure of a large appliance. Further testing by an electrical engineer is pending.

The home is owned by James Bartleson of Rio Grande, N.J. and was occupied when the fire was reported.

The residence is considered to be a total loss, with damage to the home and its contents estimated to be approximately $350,000.


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