Michael Bell, Captain

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Employees inside of a recently renovated two-story administrative office for Life Enrichment Advancing People (LEAP) Inc., a nonprofit that helps adults with developmental, cognitive, and intellectual disabilities, made an emergency call reporting that they smelled propane. No patients were inside and all employees inside of the building evacuated immediately. Captain Michael Bell responded with the Farmington Fire Rescue to the emergency call. Soon after firefighters arrived on scene and began to investigate, there was an explosion that leveled the building. Captain Bell was killed as a result of injuries sustained in the explosion. Six other firefighters, including the fire chief, and a maintenance worker were reportedly injured and transported to hospitals around the state.

Incident Location: 313 Farmington Falls Road (Route 2), Farmington, ME 04938

Department information

Farmington Fire Rescue
153 Farmington Falls Road
Farmington, Maine 04938

Chief: Terry Bell

Fatality status is provisional and may change as USFA contacts State Fire Marshals to verify fatality incident information.

Age: 68
Rank: Captain
Classification: Part-Time (Paid)
Incident date: September 16, 2019 08:07
Date of death: September 16, 2019
Cause of death: Unknown
Nature of death: Unknown
Activity type: Scene Safety
Emergency duty: Yes
Duty type: On-Scene Non-Fire
Fixed property use: Store/Office