Investigators calling Pullman fires arson - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Investigators calling Pullman fires arson

PULLMAN, Wash.- Following investigation by Pullman Police and Fire Departments and the collection of evidence, the fires in Pullman on Thursday have been officially called arson.

Fire investigators had their hands full in Pullman after the three fires Thursday morning burned nine apartment units, two garages, and one vehicle.

Russ Glenn, who suffered minor cuts , burns and smoke inhalation was initially taken to Pullman Regional Hospital but was then airlifted to Harborview Medical Center, where he was released on Saturday.

Witnesses told KHQ Local News Today they heard two explosions when the apartment fire on Nye Street behind Dissmore's grocery started, then they heard two more explosions later on.

Officials say the first call came in at 4:31 a.m. reporting a detached garage burning in the 500 block of SE Jackson Street.  The garage was fully involved when firefighters arrived.  As firefighters were dousing that fire, they found another garage that was on fire in the immediate vicinity.

At 5:13 a.m. firefighters were called to a fully involved nine-unit apartment complex at Nye and True streets.  It was here they found one person injured. Responders also arrived to find an adjacent duplex also on fire.

A fully-involved vehicle fire was reported at 6:45 a.m. on McKenzie Street near LaPlante Honda.  A SUV was destroyed in the fire.

While officials do not have a physical link between all three fires, they do strongly suspect that all three are tied together.

Fire Chief Pat Wilkins says the fires taxed his department, and 10 off-duty firefighters were called to help the eight on duty. About 20 more firefighters and their equipment were called in from Colfax,  Moscow and a Whitman County fire district.

Police and fire investigators said they have not identified a suspect or suspects at this time although they have investigated several leads that have come into the departments.

Authorities are asking anyone who might have seen anything relating to the fires to call the Pullman Police Department at 509-334-0802.

 
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