March 10, 2008 in City

Fire destroys WSU forest building

Associated Press The Spokesman-Review
 

BONNEY LAKE, Wash. – Fire has destroyed a vacant two-story building inside the closed Washington State University Demonstration Forest.

East Pierce Fire & Rescue crews found the wood building engulfed in flames when they responded to a 6:20 a.m. call on Sunday.

Assistant Fire Chief Dave Wakefield says no one was hurt in the blaze and it did not spread to surrounding trees or brush.

The cause of the fire that is deemed suspicious is under investigation.

Wakefield says there have been all kinds of people, both kids and transients, using the abandoned buildings there. It was one of three structures in the west end of the forest.

Wakefield says it’s fortunate the fire occurred in the winter when the forest is wet.

WSU operated a variety of educational programs in the 147-acre forest for 63 years. In late 2004, it decided to sell the land and negotiations over that sale are ongoing.

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