Fires at West Virginia Cave Attraction Ruled Arson

November 18, 2009

Investigators say two fires that destroyed the Smoke Hole Caverns gift shop and restaurant in West Virginia were deliberately set.

Grant County Sheriff’s Deputy S.L. Wratchford says items were found inside a trash can beside the cave’s entrance. The trash can also was set on fire.

Wratchford couldn’t provide details because the investigation is ongoing.

The first fire burned an apartment area above the restaurant on the evening of Nov. 10. Another fire broke out around 5 a.m. Nov. 11 and burned the building housing the restaurant and gift shop to the ground.

Smoke Hole Caverns remains open. The tourist attraction is on Route 55 between Seneca Rocks and Petersburg.

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