Kootenai County deputies said they found a wooden support to the Timber Terror roller coaster at Silverwood Theme Park burned from arson early Saturday morning and are still trying to identify a suspect.
Around 1:30 a.m., Kootenai County deputies and the Watch Commander responded to Silverwood for a reported fire, according to a release from the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office.
Park security told deputies they were on a routine patrol when they found one of the wooden roller coasters on fire and used a fire extinguisher to put out the blaze, the release said.
It appeared someone cut a small hole in the fence to enter the park and brought a gas canister to light the fire, said Jordan Carter, a spokesperson for the park.
The sheriff’s office has called in the state fire investigator to help, the release said. Silverwood staff have gone through security video and turned it over to deputies, Carter said.
Carter said the charred area only affected a few boards, which park staff replaced. The ride was safely running again Saturday.
“It was very small and security got there fast,” Carter said. “We’re going to add new technology around the perimeter and more night security, but it’s something that could’ve been a lot worse.”
The roller coasters have been equipped with sprinklers for several years in case of wildfire, but the fire was not big enough to activate them, he said.
Kootenai deputies ask that anyone who saw suspicious vehicles or people near Silverwood Friday night and early Saturday morning call the sheriff’s office to make a report.
“Nobody is more familiar with your neighborhood than you,” Sheriff Robert Norris said in the release. “Vehicles parked on a road or area that doesn’t normally have a vehicle parked there could be a clue that criminal activity is involved.”
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