MILTON, W.Va. — Investigators with the state Fire Marshal’s said an electrical problem likely caused a fire that destroyed an open air shed at the Milton Flea Market Friday morning.
The blaze broke out just before 8 a.m. and quickly consumed the structure which houses temporary sales at the operation that parallels U.S. Route 60.
One deputy fire marshal on the scene indicated to reporters the blaze did not appear to be suspicious. Preliminary indications are faulty wiring may have been the cause. The substantial fire destroyed about 25 percent of the vendor areas, but did not get into the fixed structure housing permanent sales areas.
Fire crews from Milton, Ona, Culloden and Hurricane were all called to the scene to assist in battling the fire. One female firefighter suffered a leg injury and was transported to the hospital.
The facility, billed as “West Virginia’s Largest Flea Market” burned to the ground in a 2008 fire. The blaze six years ago leveled the entire structure which was largely built of wood and had an open ceiling which allowed the fire to race through the buildings which measured hundreds of yards in length. The rebuilt structures are built to modern fire code standards and included fire suppression systems. Unfortunately, the location of Friday’s fire was in an area which had no walls and was simply a roof over concrete housing temporary vendors. There were no sprinklers.
The timing couldn’t be worse for the owners of the flea market. This weekend’s annual Pumpkin Festival promised large crowds of shoppers.