North Haines Volunteer Fire Department responds abandoned community hall fire

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Photo courtesy of the Pennington County Fire Service.

218th Street and Coyote Ave. fire

RAPID CITY, S.D. – The North Haines Volunteer Fire Department was called to a structure fire Tuesday night at 9:37 p.m. in rural Meade County.

Upon arrival fire crews found an engulfed abandoned building that used to serve as an old community hall on the corner of 218th Street and Coyote Ave.  Since the building had been abandoned fire crews decided to let the fire continue burning and protect the pasture and grasslands surrounding the building.

Pennington County 911, Meade County Dispatch, Rapid City Fire Department, Black Hawk Volunteer Fire Department, Piedmont Volunteer Fire Department, Rapid Valley Volunteer Fire Department, Box Elder Volunteer Fire Department, Whispering Pines Volunteer Fire Department, South Dakota State Fire Marshall’s Office, Meade County Sheriff’s Office, and West River Electric Cooperative all responded to the fire.

The structure was a total loss and there were no injuries to firefighters or civilians or livestock in the area.

“So with it being an abandoned structure without any utilities it’s very strongly thought that it was a human-caused fire. We have no information, unfortunately, as to what could have happened out there. There were thunderstorms that went through earlier in the afternoon, but that has kind of been ruled out as a cause, you know, the chance of a lightning strike lasting that long, you know, six, eight hours after the storms that roll through would be pretty low. So it’s high probability that it was human-caused,” said Matt Thompson, Assistant Fire Chief North Haines Volunteer Fire Department.

Anyone with any information about the cause of the fire is encouraged to contact the Meade County Sheriff’s Office at 605-347-2681.

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