Fire interrupts service at Wells sewage treatment plant

Jan. 25—A water use restriction has been lifted in Wells after a generator-powered ventilation system apparently overheated and caused a roof fire at the town's wastewater treatment plant Tuesday afternoon.

The town had asked customers of the Wells Sanitary District to limit water use to "essential needs only" while technicians assessed damage at the facility on Eldridge Road, according to a notice posted on the town's website.

"The water restriction advisory has been lifted," the district announced on its website Wednesday afternoon. "The sewer district is functioning once again."

Wells Fire Chief Mark Dupuis said the fire apparently started when a roof vent overheated because the plant was without power and running on a generator following Monday's snowstorm.

Wells firefighters saw flames coming out of the roof when they responded to the alarm at 3:15 p.m. Tuesday, Dupuis said. The fire was out by 5:45 p.m. Crews from Ogunquit, Kennebunk, Sanford and North Berwick assisted.

The fire at the sewage treatment plant was one of about 200 calls Wells firefighters answered in the wake of Monday's storm, Dupuis said.

Wells residents were among the hardest hit by power outages. Nearly 100 electrical customers in town were still without power Wednesday afternoon, according to the Center Maine Power website.