Arsonist gets fired up at ATM on Mooney Boulevard

Someone set fire to ATM at Wells Fargo on Mooney Boulevard in the early morning of April 22

The Sun-Gazette

VISALIA – We’ve all been a little fired up at the ATM when it can’t read a check or when it’s out of money. But one local arsonist took his frustration with the automatic teller machine a bit too far.

At about 6:03 a.m. on April 22, the Visalia Fire Department was dispatched to Wells Fargo, located at 3707 S. Mooney Boulevard, after smoke and fire were reported coming from the ATM near the front door of the bank. A group of 17 firefighters made quick work of the fire but crews had to make entry into the business and then force entry into a locked room on the interior to completely extinguish any remaining fire. The fire was under control within 10 minutes after crews arrived. 

There were no civilians inside of the bank at the time of the fire because the bank did not open until 9 a.m. Southern California Edison and the Gas Company were both requested to secure the utilities to the building. Damage to the ATM and the building was estimated at $70,000 and there was approximately $30,000 damage to the contents of the room inside the bank. The cause of the fire was determined to be arson set by an unknown individual approximately 20 minutes prior to our arrival.

Family Escapes Early morning house fire

A local family was able to escape a housefire last week after a smoke detector woke them up n the middle of the night.

The Visalia Fire Department got a call of a residential structure fire in the 600 block of West Vassar just before 1 a.m. on April 24. When the first firefighters arrived on scene the residents were already outside of the home and the garage was engulfed in flames.

The fire then spread into an attic space causing extensive fire damage throughout the house before about 20 firefighters on four engines and two trucks were able to gain control of the fire. Damages included approximately $236,000 in structural damage and $210,000 to contents and other personal property including a travel trailer, vehicle and a customized race car.

There were no reported injuries. The cause of this fire is undetermined with the origin of the fire in the garage.

Quick response prevents major damage

Firefighters were able to prevent major damage from a house fire on April 25. At about 10 p.m., the Visalia Fire Department responded to a residential fire in the 3700 block of West Victor. Three engine and one truck crew arrived to find smoke coming from the garage and that all occupants had already exited the building.

The fast attack contained the fire to the garage and prevented the fire from spreading into the attic area limiting the damage to just $6,000 of an estimated $440,000 in property value. The cause of this fire was an overheated radio controlled (RC) battery which had been placed too close to combustibles.

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