Fire at Phoenix LGBTQ youth center now being called 'accidental'

Posted: Updated:
(Source: Phoenix Fire Department) (Source: Phoenix Fire Department)
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
(Source: Phoenix Fire Dept.) (Source: Phoenix Fire Dept.)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

Fire officials now say a fire at an LGBTQ youth center in Phoenix appears to be "accidental."

The fire started at the building near Third Street and Indian School Road.

This building is vacant on one side and occupied on the other. The occupied side is a youth foundation called one.n.ten, which serves LGBTQ youth and young adults ages 14-24.

At first, fire officials were calling the fire "suspicious." But crews are now saying it appears to be accidental.

Phoenix Fire officials released the following statement:

"Fire investigators on scene are saying they have found no evidence to believe this was an intentionally set fire. They believe it was a combination of improperly stored rags and batteries mixed with a hot unventilated room that may have led to spontaneous combustion. They will continue to collect evidence. But at this time the fire appears to have been accidental in nature."

No one was hurt.

The first fire units on scene found a working fire quickly moving through the building toward the occupied side.

Firefighters made a fast aggressive interior attack to control the spread of the fire.

Ladder crews were deployed to the roof to cut holes in order to alleviate the heat and smoke inside the building.

Crews say this building has a unique layout, where the structure is elevated to allow covered parking.

The fire was quickly extinguished and there were no injuries.

The one.n.ten center released the following statement:

To our community of youth, friends and supporters: No one was injured in this morning's fire at our central Phoenix youth center. The Phoenix Fire Department is on the scene, assessing the damage, and will be the best source of information as the investigation continues.

The youth center will be closed, indefinitely. Our 24-year-old organization was forged by a resilient community, focused on providing youth opportunities, and support service. As soon we have an alternative location, and plan in place to resume programming we will share that information.

Thank you for your continued support of one•n•ten.


 

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