Suspicious fire burns part of Brawley warehouse

July 16, 2001|By KELLY GRANT, Staff Writer

BRAWLEY — What officials are calling a "suspicious" fire destroyed part of an abandoned warehouse here Sunday night as firefighters from across the Imperial Valley were summoned for help.

Brawley firefighters responded to the vacant structure at Cesar Chavez Boulevard and River Drive shortly after 7:30 p.m., said Brawley Fire Department Capt. Jesse Zendejas.

The doors and gates to the warehouse, which once housed agricultural pesticides and chemicals, were unlocked, Zendejas said.

The fire, which burned for about an hour and a half, destroyed several offices in the warehouse's front section, Zendejas said.

Zendejas said the fire is still under investigation. It's possible the fire was started by vandals, as graffiti was on the walls and trash and debris were scattered around the warehouse, Zendejas said.


Along with two engines from Brawley, a second alarm brought assistance from the Calipatria Fire Department. The Imperial County Fire Department was called in to stand by at the Brawley station, although assistance from the El Centro Fire Department, also responding, was canceled en route, Zendejas said.

Brawley Fire Department engines were back in the station by 9 p.m.

As of this morning, Zendejas did not know the estimated value of the building. No injuries were reported.

Staff Writer Kelly Grant can be reached at 337-3441.

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