Derelict Complex

Part of the vacant industrial complex off Tolland Turnpike that has been the scene of many fires over the past several decades. (Jesse Leavenworth/The Hartford Courant / August 18, 2014)

MANCHESTER — A blaze was set Sunday night at a vacant industrial complex that has been plagued by fires for decades, the fire chief said Monday.

No one was hurt. Wood pallets, brush and building material were gathered and set ablaze in one of the five buildings at 260 Tolland Turnpike, Fire Chief David Billings said.

Firefighters responded at about 6:25 p.m. and used a hose mounted at the tip of a ladder truck to douse the fire from above.

The roof of the building had previously collapsed, Billings said. The vacant complex, which is well off the road at the northern end of Tolland Turnpike, was formerly a business called Sanitary Services, and before that, Recycled Fibers.

"It's been the scene of many, many fires," the chief said.

In March 2005, a fire that was found to be arson raged through one of the buildings, which were all vacant at the time. It was the third fire at the bulding in five days. Homeless people and skateboarders had been frequenting the site, officials said at the time.

In the early 1990s, the main building burned, and several years before that, firefighters battled a huge blaze that broke out in a pile of pallets measuring about 300 square feet, Billings said.

It does not appear that anyone is currently living on the 7.3-acre site,, Billings said. But he said the owner, Two Sixty Tolland Turnpike, LLC, will have to work on better securing the site.

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