BENNINGTON -- Firefighters and emergency personnel responded to a structure fire shortly after 10 p.m. Friday at the recycling center outbuilding behind Bennington Beverage Outlet on Northside Drive. Fire personnel could not immediately identify a cause and the incident remained under investigation as possibly suspicious through the weekend.
Bennington Rural Fire Chief Joseph Hayes said there was initially some confusion with the exact location of the fire upon first call. The fire was fully involved upon arrival but firefighters had the situation under control within a half-hour, he said.
Fire damage was limited to the bottle redemption center, and the store was open as scheduled through the weekend.
Crews set up a perimeter around the area and rerouted traffic during Friday's response. Damage was concentrated to one side of the redemption center, and insurance estimates had not been finalized Saturday afternoon.
A state police fire investigator reviewed the scene along with the state Division of Fire Safety and local police detectives. "We couldn't come up with a cause of the fire," said Hayes, who said the fire department's role was done but a police investigation remained open. No injuries were reported.
Bennington and Bennington Rural Fire were called to the scene along with Bennington Rescue. A North Bennington Fire Department crew was placed on standby.
-- Zeke Wright