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Investigators find Moana Surfrider fire intentionally set

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 11:45 a.m. HST, Dec 12, 2012

Honolulu Fire Department investigators have determined that the construction dumpster fire that scorched the exterior of Moana Surfrider hotel early this morning was intentionally set.

Fire officials and police have both opened arson investigations into the 2:44 a.m. blaze that took 30 firefighters 25 minutes to bring under control. No one was injured.

Fire damage was limited to the exterior of the 111-year-old hotel.

Capt. Terry Seelig, Honolulu Fire Department spokesman, said there were no problems with the hotel’s fire alarm system in warning guests about the blaze. Hotel guests were evacuated with no reports of injuries.

Flames from the construction dumpster, which contained carpet remnants, rose as high as the eighth floor of the hotel, Seelig said. The fire damaged the exterior of the Ewa wing of the hotel, which is the oldest section.

There was some water damage to the second floor where the hotel’s offices are located.

There also was water damage to a coffee shop on the street level.

Hotel operations were not affected and no guests were displaced, according to hotel management.

Kalakaua Avenue at Seaside Avenue was closed for 90 minutes and reopened at 4:30 a.m.

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