Palo Alto, CA – Suspicious fire at furniture store minimized with help from sprinkler system

Palo Alto firefighters doused what appeared to be a “suspicious” fire at the rear of a furniture store to the Town & Country Village this morning, fire officials said.  Crews reported to the blaze at the rear of Cisco Home at 855 El Camino Real shortly after 7 a.m., Deputy Fire Chief Catherine Capriles said.

The fire “appears to be suspicious,” according to Battalion Chief Chris Woodard. An initial report indicated the fire was inside CVS Pharmacy, which is adjacent to Cisco, but Capriles later clarified that it was inside a storage room at the furniture store.

Crews had to force their way inside the store that was locked up at the time, and discovered the blaze in a storage room.  A sprinkler system was activated once they arrived and extinguished the fire, Capriles said.  The incident was upgraded to a second-alarm response that brought additional units to the scene, but crews later determined the fire was under control.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.  Access to the shopping center was limited while crews work to extinguish the fire, police said in a tweet.  At about 8:40 a.m., crews were cleaning up in the area where traffic was “no longer significantly impacted,” police tweeted.  Crews left the scene around 9 a.m., Capriles said.

Bob Wenzlau was in the area around 9 a.m. and said there appeared to be no apparent structural damage from the fire, which appeared to damage property at Cisco Home.  A damage estimate for the fire wasn’t available this morning.

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