Falling tree takes down wires, sparks brush fire

Firefighters responded to a brush fire in front of 280 Cheshire Road in Prospect on Wednesday. -MARTIN BEGNAL REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

PROSPECT — Downed power lines sparked a brush fire along Cheshire Road on Wednesday afternoon.

Firefighter Ed Malaspina, who is the public information officer for the Volunteer Fire Department of Prospect, said the fire occurred in front of 280 Cheshire Road, also known as Route 68, near the Prospect-Cheshire line.

Malaspina said the call came in at 5:33 p.m. and the first unit was on the scene within minutes. Firefighters extinguished the fire in about 15 minutes, he said.

The fire started after a tree fell, taking down the live wires. A strong wind whipped the fire and spread it quickly, catching a small part of a barn briefly that was also damaged by the falling tree.

Malaspina said the structural integrity of the barn is under investigation to determine if it’s been comprised.

Eversource Energy responded to the scene, and the Cheshire Fire Department provided mutual aid.

As of 7:30 p.m., Cheshire Road was closed in the area as crews worked to clean up the scene and repair the wires. It’s expected to remain closed for a few more hours.

As of 7:37 p.m., Eversource reported there were 61 customers in Prospect without power.

Malaspina said it’s a high-risk time of year for brush fires and winds can carry them quickly.