HAVERHILL — One dog died and a second seriously injured in a fire that heavily damaged a more than 200-year-old single-family home at 295 Lowell Ave. just around the corner from Westgate Plaza yesterday afternoon.
Fire chief Richard Borden said no one was home at the time and the blaze went undetected until a passing motorist called 911 at 12:57 p.m.
Borden said Engine 1 from the High Street fire station was first on the scene as it was in the area after responding to a motor vehicle crash on Interstate 495.
“It was coming this way to return to the station when the call came in,” Borden said, noting that even though firefighters were in the area, delayed detection and delayed reporting allowed the fire to gain control, resulting in major damages to the home.
“Once we found it the guys did a good job knocking it down,” he said, adding it appeared to have started on the first floor, but that the cause of the blaze was still under investigation.
Dave Accardi was on the scene and said that his son Joseph Accardi, 28, recently purchased the home and moved in on Jan. 1 with his girlfriend and a friend. He said his son was distraught after being informed of the death of his pet terrier. He said another dog, a greyhound and beagle mix, was severely injured and taken to a veterinarian. He said he did not know if the dog was going to make it.
Accardi said his son recently got a full-time job teaching in Lawrence and that he signed papers on the home in December.
He said he did not know enough about the extent of the damages to say what will happen to the home.
According to the city assessor’s office, the home was built in 1800 and sits on about a half acre.