"Suspicious" fire breaks out behind Lexington hardware store

By: Jordan Vilines Email
By: Jordan Vilines Email

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - The smoke could be seen from miles away. The lumberyard behind a Lexington hardware store went up in flames on Wednesday night and firefighters are calling the fire suspicious.

The fire, behind the Lowe's on Richmond Road, caused firefighters to evacuate the store as a precaution.

Many of you shared your i-witness pictures and video showing the flames and smoke.

“When we got here there was so much smoke that visibility was very difficult,” said Major C.J. Haunz with Lexington Fire Department.

Crews finally made their way to the origin of the fire in the lumber storage yard behind Lowe's -- a location that raised red flags for firefighters.

“What makes it suspicious is the fact that there is no logical ignition source that would've been around where that lumber was stored,” Major Haunz says.

Shortly after the fire, investigators questioned some neighborhood kids to see if they knew who started the fire.

We caught up with the elementary school kids a short time later and they told us that the person responsible was a boy around their age.

“My cousin saw one of the boys light a piece of paper and throw it on the wood and then start running down the street,” one of the neighborhood boys told us.

A possible prank --that could've cost firefighters their lives.

“The fire was hot enough that while the crews were putting it out, one of the metal lumber storage racks actually collapsed. If firefighters would've been in the wrong spot when it fell, it would've killed one of them.”

Fire investigators say they're taking the kids' accounts of what happened seriously and they'll continue following up on leads until they find the person or persons responsible.

If anyone has information, you're asked to call 859-231-5672 or email arsontips@lexingtonky.gov

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