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[Updated] Cause of Mavis Fire Under Investigation

No injuries reported in Marble Avenue blaze Friday night.

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The scent of burning rubber lingers around  three hours after Sergeant Listwan smelled smoke and called in the Marble Avenue fire.

He notified the of the blaze at 10:02 p.m. on Friday.

"Flames were shooting up pretty high in the back and the rear right half of the building blew out," said Police Chief Richard Love.

A Pleasantville tower ladder remained at the scene until approximately 2 a.m., continuing to douse water on the top and rear area of the building, though the fire appeared to be out by 11 p.m.

The property is now surrounded by yellow police tape.

While Pleasantville Mayor Peter Scherer said some witnesses reported an explosion* occurred at the scene, the source and cause of the fire has not yet been determined.

"It's unclear at the moment what the source of it was," said Scherer, "but, a big fire was the last thing we needed at the end of a tough week. That's for sure."

The Mayor said while he did not know of anyone being in the building at the time of the fire, or any related injuries, the building's structural damage included "a partial collapse in the back."

"The building is obviously in fragile condition and can't be occupied the way it is," he said. "It's going to have to get secured...Clearly it will take some substantial reconstruction to get this building back online."

Dozens of residents stood behind police tape across the street from Mavis as emergency responders from Pleasantville, Thornwood, Chappaqua, Millwood, Pocantico Hills, Westchester County and the greater Pleasantville area fought the flames and secured the area.

Con Edison workers were also at the scene.

While emergency responders were working, the intersection of Marble Avenue, Bedford Road and Memorial Plaza was closed to cars.

Bedford Road and Memorial Plaza were reopened as several fire trucks left the scene prior to 12:45 a.m.

Scherer said Pleasantville Building Inspector Michael Testa was en route to the scene and will investigate the cause of the fire. He will continue to examine the damage in greater detail tomorrow during daylight hours with the building's owner and Westchester County Cause and Origin team.

"Maybe tomorrow we'll know a little more," said Love. "If they suspect arson or anything suspicious, they will turn it over to us and the detectives will take it from there."

Despite the village being hit with ,  and a high-wind , all within the last two weeks, the Chief pointed out things could have been worse.

"Nobody got hurt," he said. "We've been very lucky."

*Editor's Note: A witness uploaded a video to Patch of the fire/explosion, which has been removed due to language that may be offensive to some readers. You can view the video on YouTube here.

Bob September 04, 2011 at 11:48 AM
good coverage Patch..

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