BERWICK – Improper disposal of smoking materials likely caused the fire that claimed the life of Berwick Fire Captain Joel Barnes.
That’s according to a spokesperson for the Maine Department of Public Safety.
Spokesman Steve McCausland said a joint investigation by the State Fire Marshal’s Office, the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Berwick Police Department determined the fire started on the third-floor outside porch.
He said smoking material thrown into an unsafe container ignited the fire on March 1.
The statement also said the Maine Department of Labor continues its investigation into the conditions of the fire equipment and safety standards that were being followed.