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UPDATE | Marysville police, firefighters investigating series of dumpster fires

Smoke from a fire set in a dumpster blackened the outside wall of the cafeteria at Totem Middle School Monday morning. - Kirk Boxleitner
Smoke from a fire set in a dumpster blackened the outside wall of the cafeteria at Totem Middle School Monday morning.
— image credit: Kirk Boxleitner

MARYSVILLE — A series of dumpster fires early in the morning May 17 had firefighters racing to respond and has police investigating.

Five separate dumpster fires were set at four different locations within an hour and five blocks of each other starting at approximately 4 a.m., according to Marysville Fire District Public Education Specialist and Public Information Officer Kristen Thorstenson.

The first two dumpster fires were called in 4:04 a.m. at Totem Middle School, located at 1605 Seventh St., before a third dumpster was called in as smoldering at 4:13 a.m. at 908 Columbia Ave. The Strawberry Lanes Bowling Alley, located at 1067 Columbia Ave., suffered the fourth reported dumpster fire at about 4:35 a.m., and before they'd even put that fire out, firefighters were notified that a fifth dumpster was already smoldering in the 1100 block of Columbia Ave.

Although the side of Totem Middle School was blackened by smoke and soot that was still being hosed off as students arrived to attend their regularly scheduled classes, Thorstenson reported no other building damage or injuries. She confirmed that the fires are being investigated as having been intentionally set.

"We're asking people to keep an eye out for anything out of the ordinary," Thorstenson said. "In the meantime, we urge the community to make sure dumpsters, garbage cans and any other combustible materials are at least five feet away from buildings."

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