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Ways to prevent dumpster fires from spreading

EUREKA- The Eureka Police Department is continuing to investigate a recent rash of dumpster fires, the last of which occurred on early Saturday morning.  Humboldt Bay Fire officials say the increase in these fires can take up resources.

"The unusually increased number of dumpster fires we've had over the last month or so ties up our apparatus and crews more than we'd expect from these kinds of fires, which would keep them tied up if they had any other calls in town," said Fire Marshal Rusty Goodlive of Humboldt Bay Fire.

Since the first of the year, there have been seven suspicious dumpster fires, most of them in the downtown area.  Fire officials say when these fires are not intentionally set, they typically start from discarded cigarettes, ash or other flammable materials. They also say dumpsters are required to be a minimum of 5 feet away from any combustible wall, people should keep them locked and not place them under open windows.

"By protecting your building by storing your dumpster against a non-combustible wall, you can prevent a dumpster fire from spreading to the building itself, and especially if its not underneath an opening such as a window, where the fire can get inside the building," Fire Marshal Goodlive said.