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Local firefighters save Snokist building from being razed Friday

GRANDVIEW - It is not often that $250,000 in damages can be considered something positive to look at. This is the case, though, with a fire that could have easily done a lot more structural damage to the Snokist Growers warehouse at 614 West Wine Country Road if it had not been for the efforts of some 35 area firefighters.

At 4:28 p.m. last Friday afternoon, the Grandview Fire Department, along with firefighters from Sunnyside, Mabton and Prosser, responded to a fire alarm at the Snokist site. A back loading dock on the south side of the Snokist building in Grandview was fully consumed in fire. Grandview Fire Chief Charles Damron said some 2,000 plastic apple bins that were being stored on the dock were fully engulfed.

"It was burning right next to the building," said Damron.

Damron said there was an awning that hung over the apple bins that firefighters pulled down to prevent possible injury.

To fight the stubborn blaze, firefighters used four engines on site, utilizing two ladder trucks.

The fire did cause $250,000 in damage, said Damron. But he praised the efforts of the firefighters involved with the incident, saying there could have been a lot more damage to the actual facility.

"That is a big building," said Damron.

Damron said Grandview building inspectors will be out to analyze the warehouse to see if it is structurally intact. He said the cause of the fire is still being investigated.

There were two minor injuries at the scene. A firefighter from Mabton was treated for a sprained ankle. Another firefighter from Grandview was treated for heat exhaustion.

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