By GAIL OBER, LACONIA DAILY SUN
LACONIA — A fire caused by teenaged boys smoking in the attic caused about $50,000 in damage to a home on Old North Main Street Sunday around 5 p.m.
Fire Chief Ken Erickson said the boys, who were about 16 years old, had left the three-story house and later noticed some smoke coming from the attic. One of the boys ran back into the house and took a little girl who was on the first floor to safety.
The children's mother had just left for work, but returned immediately after her son called her. She stayed in her car with the young girl while firefighters extinguished the blaze.
Erickson said the there was a lot of fire in the attic but because it was unfinished, it was extinguished fairly quickly. He said most of the damage to the rest of the house, primarily on the second floor, was from the water used to put out the fire.
"Even though there was a significant amount of fire, not all of the water we use turns to steam," she said.
Erickson said there were multiple phone calls initially made to the 9-1-1, so the lieutenant in charge called immediately for a first alarm that brought crews from Gilford and Belmont to the scene.
He said when Assistant Chief Kirk Beattie arrived, he called for a second alarm when he saw the size and age of the home, but most of those departments were canceled immediately. Meredith firefighters stayed to assist.
Erickson said it took a long time to overhaul the attic and make sure the fire was completely extinguished.
He said the family was assisted Sunday night by the New Hampshire Red Cross but is insured. There were no injuries.
Boys smoking in the attic of this home at 1420 N. Main St. accidentally caused a fire Sunday. (Gail Ober/Laconia Daily Sun)
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