Spontaneous combustion is being cited as the cause of this week’s fire at Frank’s Laundromat on South Algoma.
City fire inspector Bob Vander Ploeg explains some rags from a restaurant, which where piled up in a storage room at the side of the building, caught ablaze.
He tells us the cooking oils, which are typically used in restaurants, are organic and capable of bursting into flames on their own if they are absorbed into textiles like cotton rags.
Vander Ploeg adds, if those rags are piled in such a way in which the heat cannot escape naturally, spontaneous combustion can occur.
The city fire inspector isn’t surprised by the discovery saying he’s seen this happen on “at least two other occasions” in Thunder Bay.
No one was in the building during the early Monday morning fire which caused extensive damage.