LINCOLNVILLE — Surveillance cameras captured several people taking significant amounts of wood on multiple occasions at the Waldo County Woodshed location in town last week.

Sonja Twombly, a volunteer who coordinates scheduling for wood pickup, said the incidents could be a case of a misunderstanding. “We don’t turn people away, and if there is a need, it is not our business,” she said.

But some people may not understand the wood is not just there to take, she added. There is a procedure to follow. When a facility is missing wood, Twombly said, it is hard to operate. 

Twombly said if she directed a family, who had called to pick up wood at the Lincolnville site, and not enough supply was on hand, “that is a problem.”  They may not have gas to get to another site, or be able to take time off from work, and it places an additional burden on the family.

Thefts are not new to the volunteer-run nonprofit group that provides free firewood for people in need in Waldo County. Twombly said they have thefts every season, but would prefer to highlight positive connections made through the Woodshed, including one with Peter Brady.

Brady saw one of his neighbors was in need recently, called for a pickup, and drove the load to the family in Palmyra, because they did not have a vehicle. “We made the arrangements in 24 hours,” Twombly said, “and now the family has enough wood to last them for about a month.”

Last week, Twombly said, they distributed 35 cords of wood —  “that’s a huge amount.” She said she typically fields about 150 calls a week for various services, including to pick up wood and to volunteer.

Facilities operate under the honor system, and if anyone is in need of wood, Waldo County Woodshed requires people to call 323-5053. Twombly said once she connects with people, she asks their name, address, phone number and names and ages of people living in the household. 

Twombly said Waldo County Sheriff’s Office was notified and is investigating the recent incidents at the Lincolnville facility, but did not know if a formal complaint had been filed.

For more information, visit ​​ waldocountywoodshed.org.