We now know what caused the fire that demolished a 31,000-square-foot packing warehouse in Orondo last Monday.
Douglas County District 4 Fire Chief Jim Oatey says the fire at Pine Canyon Growers was caused by a ventilation fan that seized up. The federal Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives aided in the investigation and had determined the cause. “When a motor fan seizes, it gets really hot and can start materials next to it on fire,” said Oatey. Fire officials say the building’s insulation is constructed with sawdust.
Oatey says the building did not have an alarm system and its likely that the fire had been burning inside for hours before it was noticed from the outside. Surprisingly, Oatey says many large commercial buildings do not have an alarm system.