Haverhill Athletic Center Fire Accidental
State Fire Marshal Peter J. Ostroskey, Haverhill Fire Chief William Laliberty and Haverhill Police Chief Alan R. DeNaro said the cause of the March 1, 2017 fire at the Cedardale Athletic complex at 931 Boston Road, Haverhill is accidental.
Investigators used heavy equipment to remove layers of debris and found the fire started in the women’s locker room. The team has found nothing to indicate that the fire was intentionally set. Inside the locker room there were several possible ignition sources for the fire, such as electrical wiring, small appliances, or light fixtures, but there is not sufficient evidence to point to one over the other as the most likely cause of this accidental fire.
The property was originally a warehouse style building with indoor tennis courts. Over the course of decades, multiple additions were built to house additional indoor tennis courts, two indoor pools, a basketball court, and other athletic facilities. Damages are estimated at between $2 and 5 million. Only a maintenance worker was in the building at 2 a.m. when the fire started and no one was injured. It took Haverhill firefighters four hours to fully extinguish the blaze in the unsprinklered building.
The fire was jointly investigated by the Haverhill Fire and Police Departments and State Police assigned to the Office of the State Fire Marshal.