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Family looks to rebuild after New Baltimore blaze

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    Firefighters at the scene of a fire at 509 High Rock Road in New Baltimore.
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    Thomas Marra/For Columbia-Greene Media The early morning blaze gutted the New Baltimore home last Thursday.
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    The home at 509 High Rock Road in New Baltimore is deemed a total loss by its owner Brett Carver.
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    Debris from a house fire at 509 High Rock Road in New Baltimore.
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    Jada Kitson/Columbia-Greene Media Homeland Security and Emergency Services Fire Prevention and Control investigate a house fire that occurred at about 4:30 a.m. last Thursday morning at 509 High Rock Road in New Baltimore.
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    Thomas Marra/For Columbia-Greene Media Firefighters from the Coeymans Hollow fire department on the scene of the early morning fire.
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    Thomas Marra/For Columbia-Greene Media The home is considered a total loss in the wake of the blaze.
August 14, 2018 11:24 am

NEW BALTIMORE — A family of seven is hopeful after an early-morning fire destroyed their home last Thursday, Aug. 9, police said.

Emergency personnel responded to a fire at 509 High Rock Road at about 4:30 a.m., according to alerts from Greene County 911. The cause remains under investigation by state police.

“We’re going to be here awhile,” state police Senior Investigator Pete Kusminsky said the afternoon of the blaze.

It was the second major structural fire in New Baltimore in the past couple of weeks.

Homeowners Brett and Shasta Carter and their five children, ages 5, 8, 9, 13 and 15, were not home at the time of the blaze, Shasta said.

The family has three dogs, which escaped the devastating flames. The dogs’ safety was Shasta’s first concern, she said.

“Everybody’s out safely — no fatalities, no injuries,” Brett said, adding the home is a total loss.

The couple is not sure what caused the fire, they said, and did not know of structural issues that could have led to the blaze.

“I don’t know what could have started it,” Shasta said.

Police would not comment on the nature or origin of the fire or if the blaze is suspicious.

“All I can I say right now is it’s still under investigation,” Kusminsky said.

At one point a floor inside the home collapsed, limiting firefighters’ ability to conduct an interior attack on the blaze, and a ladder truck was requested from the Ravena fire department to put out hot spots from above, according to a fire official on the scene.

The Carters are remaining optimistic despite their losses.

“We’re going to just start over and build from the first board up,” Shasta said. “We’re going to rebuild and go from there.”

Shasta first heard about the fire from her grandfather.

“My grandfather called me because he heard it over the scanner,” she said.

The family was working together to determine where they will stay while in the meantime.

Volunteers from the Mid-Hudson Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross provided emergency aid to the Carters and their children, according to a statement from the Red Cross.

The family received financial assistance for necessities such as shelter, food and clothing. Volunteers provided emotional support and comfort kits, which include personal care items and stuffed animals for the children.

Red Cross staff and volunteers will remain available to help the family in the coming days, according to the Red Cross.

Many fire departments were on the scene to aid in firefighting efforts. Local fire departments providing mutual aid included Coeymans, Coeymans Hollow, Ravena and Coxsackie, and Selkirk Fire Department was on standby.

State police, the New Baltimore Fire Department, the Greene County Fire Investigation Team, the Greene County Sheriff’s Office and state Office of Fire Prevention and Control also assisted at the scene, Kusminsky said.