Arson suspected in Kalihi warehouse fire, HFD says
Arson is suspected in the fire that heavily damaged a Kalihi warehouse occupied by Lava Lining late Friday night, causing an estimated $475,000 in damages, Honolulu Fire Department Capt. Earle Kealoha said Saturday.
HFD and HPD investigators were still at the scene Saturday night.
If arson is confirmed as the cause of the fire, the case will be turned over to police and handled as a criminal investigation.
Nine fire companies responded to a 10:30 p.m. call Friday and were met with thick black smoke billowing from the roof of the warehouse, according to Kealoha.
Initial attempts to reach the fire were delayed until firefighters could gain access through two roll-up doors. Ventilation fans were set up to push toxic smoke from the building.
The blaze was brought under control by 11 p.m. and extinguished around 2 a.m.
Hazmat specialists were also brought in to assess whether hazardous products contained in the warehouse posed a threat to responders.
Fire officials estimate that the fire caused $400,000 in damage to the area of structure occupied by Lava Lining and $75,000 to the contents. Damage to other areas of the structure have not yet been determined, Kealoha said.