Portland Fire & RescueFirefighters battle a two-alarm blaze at a Southeast Portland warehouse Monday afternoon. As the roof began to cave, crews were forced to fight flames from outside the building.
Fire crews were in for a bit of a surprise Monday afternoon as they battled a two-alarm blaze at a Southeast Portland warehouse.
"After the smoke began to clear, firefighters were surprised to find the remains of a very large and sophisticated marijuana grow operation," said Paul Corah, a spokesman for Portland Fire & Rescue.
Firefighters responded to 14439 S.E. Stark Street just before 3:20 p.m. after several 9-1-1 callers saw flames shooting out of the roof of what was reportedly a woodworking shop, Corah said. A second alarm was called at 3:30 p.m., but firefighters left the building just a few minutes later as the building's roof began to sag.
As crews began to tackle the main body of the fire, flames burst through another section of the roof, which continued to fall, Corah said. The blaze was brought under control at 4:20 p.m.
After firefighters discovered the grow operation — which Corah said covered much of the 5,000-foot-square warehouse — Portland police and ATF investigators were called to the scene.
No arrests have been made, but police spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson said an investigation was ongoing.
There was no word on the damage or cause of the fire, but Corah said investigators deemed it suspicious.
November 21, 2011
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