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Fire may have been caused by electrical malfunction

Firefighters work to extinguish a fire that caused "significant" damage to a garage, a boat and two vehicles Monday afternoon in East Hastings.1 / 2
A garage is hidden by a cloud of smoke as it burns Monday afternoon in East Hastings. The two vehicles pictured were damaged by the fire. Submitted photo.2 / 2

A Monday afternoon fire in East Hastings may have been the result of an electrical malfunction, according to Assistant Fire Chief and Fire Marshal John Townsend.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but it appears to have started in the roof of a lean-to or carport that was next to the garage at 1102 E. Second St., which is on the corner of Second and Adam streets.

A passerby called 911 about 1:52 p.m., Jan. 11, and reported that a boat, garage and two cars were on fire. The boat was parked under the lean-to and the two vehicles were parked outside the garage door.

The fire spread from the lean-to, to the boat, into the garage and then to the two cars, but not necessarily in that order. The Hastings Fire Department arrived on the scene shortly before 2 p.m. and began dousing the flames with water from their fire hoses. They also used a ladder truck to spray water down into the attic area of the garage. The blaze was under control at about 2:45 p.m., and there were fire personnel on the scene until about 4:20 p.m.

The lean-to is still standing, but the flames burned large holes in its roof. The garage is also still intact, but Townsend said there was "significant" damage to both structures. He said the same for the boat and two vehicles, but had yet to come to a monetary damage estimate. No one was injured as a result of the fire.