Andover Fire Officials Look at Solar Panels as Cause of Home Fire

Andover fire officials are studying a rooftop solar array which may have caused $50,000 damage to a home late Wednesday morning.

In any event, fighting the fire at 89 Cross St. meant additional considerations because of the electrical component.

“Because solar panels store electricity, this adds an entirely different dynamic to how we fight the fire. Crews did a great job quickly extinguishing the fire while keeping themselves safe at all times,” said Fire Chief Michael Mansfield.

No one was home at the time of the fire and no injuries to firefighters were reported.

Andover Fire Rescue received an emergency 911 call from a neighbor of the home just before 11 a.m., Wednesday. The caller reported seeing flames coming from the roof. Crews used ground ladders to climb the roof. A line was also stretched into the home in the event of spreading fire, but the fire was limited to the roof. However, the home’s inside did receive moderate smoke damage.

The fire appeared to be coming from under a set of solar panels mounted to the roof. Engine 1 and 3, along with Ladder 1, Ambulance 1 and Car 2 responded to the scene. The Tewksbury and Lawrence Fire Departments provided station coverage.

While the cause of the fire remains under investigation, investigators are focusing on the solar panels.