A fire broke out at PetSmart on 23rd in Tacoma around 6:20 p.m. on Feb. 28, 2013. Luckily no animals were injured. Investigators have said that the Thursday evening fire, that could have killed dozens of animals, was no accident. When the fire broke out the business was packed with customers, pets, employees and pets for sale and for adoption.
Investigators were at the location most of Friday going through the area in search of clues as to how the fire started. The fire marshal has come to the conclusion the fire was not an accident and has turned the investigation over to the Tacoma Police Department. Joe Meincecke of the Tacoma Fire Department said “our investigator determined that there was enough evidence at the scene to call this a suspicious fire." Employees at the store said that they saw flames near the dog beds.
Regular customers to this PetSmart location are shocked to find out that the fire was suspicious. Customer Cathy Grinau said "that's not good, who would want to hurt animals? I don't understand that at all." Like many PetSmart locations, this location is well known for holding and sponsoring adoption events for local organizations.
Joe Meincecke of the Tacoma Fire Department said "it involved a lot pets, different four- legged creatures, reptiles, birds, all kinds of things." In the front of the store there are normally cats from the Tacoma Humane Society, they were all safely evacuated from the building, as were eight dogs who were in the pet salon. The reality that someone intentionally set a fire inside of a pet store has regular customers extremely upset and outraged.
This fire caused about $35,000 in damages. The evacuated animals were taken to other PetSmart stores in the area, and they hope to be open for business again by early next week. If you know anything about the cause of this fire please contact local authorities.
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