Arson to blame for caboose, train car fire in Austintown

AUSTINTOWN -- A fire that destroyed a train caboose and damaged a train car on South Meridian Road was intentionally set, according to Township Fire Chief Andrew Frost.
Fire officials are still working to determine what was used to ignite the flames early Saturday morning, Frost said. However, he added that explosions occurred inside the caboose while firefighters were at the scene.
There were no injuries. The fire caused about $10,000 in damage to the caboose. Investigators are still working to determine how much damage the second car suffered.
The train cars were undergoing renovations at a Meridian Road business run by Budd Brothers of Canfield when the fire occurred at about 1:30 a.m. Frost said the renovations were designed to turn the train cars into living spaces.
Firefighters spent about two hours extinguishing the fire.
The Meridian Road business also was the site of a fire that caused more than $1 million in damage to a paint warehouse in the late 1990s. Frost said the federal Emergency Management Agency spent about $450,000 to clean up paint chemicals after the fire, which was accidentally set.

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