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Cardboard Boxes Blamed in Maine Fire that Killed 4
11/12/2012 10:51 AM ET  

The state fire marshal's office are blaming cardboard boxes placed near a woodstove for a fire that killed an Orrington man and his three children.

ORRINGTON, Maine (AP) _ Fire officials are blaming cardboard boxes stored near a wood-burning stove for a weekend house fire that killed a Maine man and his three children and hospitalized the mother.

The state fire marshal's office said Monday the boxes were within inches of the stove, and that a container of lighter fluid found nearby likely accelerated the fire once the boxes ignited.

Thirty-one-year-old Christine Johnson escaped the Saturday morning fire, but remained hospitalized Monday. Killed were her husband, 30-year-old Benjamin Johnson III, and their children, 9-year-old Ben, 8-year-old Leslie and 4-year-old Ryan.

Autopsy results show that they died of smoke inhalation.

It was the deadliest fire in Maine since December 1992, when a baby and three adults were killed in an arson fire in Portland.




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