Investigators working to determine cause of abandoned Pownal race track fire

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POWNAL — Fire investigators arrived this morning to try and determine what set off a fire at the abandoned Pownal race track.

The fire was reported yesterday evening, and first arriving crews noted heavy fire throughout the building that has not been occupied for several years.

The fire progression was extensive and it was decided by the fire chief to only fight the fire from the exterior to prevent injury or possible death by any internal fire fighting efforts by fire personnel.

Members of the fire investigative team arrived this morning and met with fire personnel.

Based upon the examination of the exterior, and noting several areas of collapse in the roof and the damage to heavy support columns to the three-story steel and concrete building, it was deemed too dangerous to conduct an internal examination.

The building was the scene of several other small fires over the summer which had been put out by the fire department as well as numerous events of vandalism and littering throughout the property.

These were deemed to be young adults hanging out in the area and entering the building to vandalize the structure.

Police say recently, ATV riders were noted inside the structure driving around.

Investigators say there was no power to the structure and there were no reports of any lightning before the fire.

At this time, investigators say the fire is considered suspicious.