A fire at an abandoned ice plant in Marion has been ruled suspicious.
Neighbors reported hearing an explosion around 4 a.m. Tuesday morning. According to Virginia State Police, there is no evidence that an explosion actually occurred.
The ice plant had been abandoned for several years, and there was no electricity running to the building.
Firefighters are expected to be on scene most of the day putting out hot spots.
Here is the news release:
On Tuesday, March 11, 2014, just after 4am, the Marion Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to a structure fire at the old Ice Plant at the end of College Street. Neighbors reported being awakened by an explosion, saw flames, and called 911. Upon arrival, MVFD found the long-vacant wooden structure fully involved and began external suppression operations, deploying multiple lines and deck guns. Due to the proximity to the railroad tracks, Norfolk & Southern halted all rail traffic until the blaze could be contained. Since the structure had been vacant, with no electricity or utilities for some time, authorities ruled the fire to be suspicious in nature. After battling the blaze for over two and a half hours, the bulk of the structure was gone, and the Marion Police Department notified the Virginia State Police Arson Unit, who arrived on scene around9:30am to begin their investigation. Marion fire crews are expected to remain on scene for most of the day, extinguishing hot spots and protecting the rail line and nearby woods while investigators search for possible cause of the fire.
Fire crews in Marion are still trying to figure out what caused an abandoned ice plant explosion and fire.
The Marion Volunteer Fire Department got to the plant on College Street around 4:00 a.m. Tuesday and worked for more than two hours to put out the flames.
Virginia State Police arson teams have been called into investigate due to suspicious circumstances.