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Firefighter's Permitted Barn Burn Spreads to Nearby Home

SOUTH PARIS, Maine (AP) _ Officials say a fire started by a deputy fire chief to destroy a barn in Maine ended up engulfing an unoccupied house nearby.

Willie Buffington, who's been a firefighter for more than 50 years with the Paris Fire Department, says he was permitted to burn the barn. The fire spread Monday afternoon to the home, which was only about 10 feet away.

A neighbor called 911 around noon and an excavator tore down the home's remains. Buffington tells the Sun Journal that the house had been empty for about a year.

Fire Chief Brad Frost described the home as old and dry.

Some residents lost cable and phone service.