YFD: rat caused VFW fire - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

YFD: rat caused VFW fire

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YAKIMA--A rat chewing on an electrical wire started the fire at Yakima's Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 397, according to the Yakima Fire Department.

Investigators determined Friday that a rat chewed through a cord connected to a juke box, setting the rat on fire.  The rat ran to its nest, which was filled with combustible material.  A private investigator hired by the VFW's insurance company supported the findings.

The fire started shortly before 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday, closing Fifth and Walnut Avenues for several hours.  Firefighters saved the building but not without heavy damage.  Nearly all of the antique war memorabilia, some dating back to World Wars I and II, was destroyed.

Damages are estimated to be more than one million dollars.