An early morning fire destroyed an antique cape-style home at 286 Old Harbor Rd., fire Capt. Michael P. Silvia said in a press release Saturday. The house, the main part built around 1740, was declared unsafe to enter after the fast-moving blaze consumed everything but the rear portion, a newer addition.
Silvia said that a call came in at 1:38 a.m. Saturday after being discovered by the tenant, who was returning home. When the first fire apparatus arrived at the scene there was already heavy fire coming from multiple levels as well as smoke throughout the building. The tenant, said Silvia, received a minor injury while trying to remove items from the burning house. He was treated at the scene and taken by ambulance to Charlton Memorial Hospital, where he was examined and released.
Firefighters had the fire under control in less than an hour, Silvia said, but damage to the structure was almost total. "The lack of hydrants in the area and the cold weather also made fighting the fire challenging," Silvia said.
Mutual aid from Little Compton and Tiverton fire departments assisted by shuttling water to the scene from approximately a mile and a half away, said the release. Fall River Fire Department assisted by responding to a medical call in Westport.
The Red Cross was contacted to help the tenant find temporary shelter. Assessors records show that the house is owned by Michael and Jennifer Coye, and is valued at $489,300. As of midday Saturday there was no determination about the origin of the fire, and the fire remains under investigation, Silvia said.