Morgantown Still Battling Students' Fire Fun

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Morgantown, WV (AP) -- Morgantown used to be known as the nation's couch-burning capital, but fire chief David Fetty says West Virginia University students have moved on: now they set fires in dumpsters.

Tired of dousing 10 or 12 deliberately set fires a week, the city has adopted an ordinance that creates a new category of illegal burning, with a mandatory $1,000 fine.

Fetty says the State Fire Marshal's Office gave its blessing to the ordinance.

It creates a charge between the citation for a minor infraction like burning leaves and felony arson, which requires at least $500 in property damage.

The city and university have tried for years to crack down on fires.

Tuesday night, while the measure was being passed, two more were set.

(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)


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