Three 95-gallon recycling bins set against the exterior of a northeast Bend business were quickly extinguished by firefighters when they were discovered ablaze about 2:30 Thursday morning, but fire officials say the fire was “human-caused” and have turned over the case to police for further investigation.
Fire inspectors determined the fire was most likely caused by application of an open flame or other heat source to combustible materials in the plastic recycling cans, a news release stated.
Bend Fire and Rescue responded to an alarm at 63064 NE 18th Street, Suite 101, a commercial building leased by Bend Mailing Services. Flames were visible from the three dumpsters when they arrived, and although the fire was extinguished quickly, Fire Inspector Cindy Kettering said crews remained on scene for about an hour to ensure that the fire had not extended into the building. Ventilation fans were used to clear the smoke from the structure.
There were no injuries, and the building sustained about $500 in damage, mostly contained to a metal exterior door. Contents to the building also received an estimated $500 in damage.
Kettering reminded business owners to keep combustible materials away from structures. “Any recycling or garbage bin over 1.5 cubic yards must be located at least 5 feet past the end of any building overhangs. Containers less than 1.5 cubic yards should also be located away from any buildings, especially building openings such as doors or windows. Ideally, all garbage and recycling bins should be located in a non-combustible enclosure away from any buildings or sources of ignition,” she said.