(Ottumwa) – Fire investigators have ruled the cause of Tuesday’s fire at El Rancho Grande at the intersection of Main and Jefferson in downtown Ottumwa.
Ottumwa Fire Chief Tony Miller says the cause was electrical. Joining the Ottumwa Fire Department in its investigation was the State Fire Marshal’s Office in Des Moines.
Miller says it appears a light socket in the basement of the building ignited the blaze.
The fire was reported shortly after midnight, Tuesday, and when firemen arrived on the scene thisck smoke was observed coming from the building. Firefighters were on the scene for about 12 hours putting out the fire and later watching for hot spots.
The city of Ottumwa has placed large concrete barriers at the bottom of the parking lot adjacent to the building Wednesday. Officials are concerned over the stability of the structure.