Walla Walla firefighters battle warehouse blaze

The warehouse at 920 Jefferson St. is vacant and has been listed for sale.

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Firefighters work to put out a fire in an empty warehouse on Saturday afternoon.

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Firefighters work to put out a fire in an empty warehouse on Saturday afternoon.

WALLA WALLA - Firefighters fought for close to half an hour to contain flames at a vacant 18,000-square-foot industrial warehouse on the north side of town.

The call came in Saturday around noon, when witnesses from as far away as U.S. Highway 12 reported smoke and flames from the roof of the warehouse located at 920 Jefferson St., according to fire officials.

At least a dozen firefighters from Station One and Two were on scene, attacking with a ladder truck, water cannon, numerous hoses and K-12 (circular) rescue saws.

An engine from College Place was also called in for stand-by mutual aid.

No injuries were reported.

During the fire, a large cloud of smoke and steam covered most of the north end of the structure and adjacent parking lot, while firefighters fought to cut through bay doors using the K-12 saws in an attempt to ventilate the warehouse and give access to knock down flames.

The fire was contained mostly to an upstairs office in the center of the massive structure, but the heat damage spread throughout the center of the structure, causing numerous windows to break, officials said.

In spite of the damage, investigators said the building is still structurally sound.

The warehouse had no electricity or gas prior to the fire, but investigators said it was still too early to determine if arson was a cause.

Walla Walla County records list the warehouse owner as Bank of Whitman.

The property is also currently listed with Clark Pacific Real Estate for $525,000.

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