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Update: Old School Fire

Tuesday's fire at an Asheville school demolition site has been ruled accidental. Investigators say a work-crew cutting a steel-beam with a torch sparked the blaze that could be seen for miles.

Isaac Dickson Elementary was already coming down. Demolition began here several weeks ago to make way for a new campus slated to open in less than two years.

What turned out to be a spectacular fire broke out around 10:30 a.m. Tuesday. The wind-whipped flames spread quickly. With sections of old roofing involved, burning asphalt sent thick smoke blowing into the air and across nearby I-240. That slowed traffic, but didn't cause any accidents. There were no injuries fighting the fire.

Officials say it's a good thing they were dealing with an abandoned building because the job was safer than it could've been.

More than six hours after the fire was officially out, there were hidden hotspots buried beneath the rubble that crews had to keep tending to. Firefighters will likely be back out Wednesday morning to check on it again. A city schools official says the fire will only hold-up demolition for a day or two.


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