Arson suspected in community center fire

Police are investigating arson in a fire Sunday night that destroyed two portable toilets and caused nearly $40,000 in damage at the Pukalani Community Center.

When a Makawao engine company arrived on scene seven minutes after the 11:40 p.m. alarm, the roof of the bathroom facility was engulfed in flames, said Fire Services Chief Lee Mainaga. He said the fire appeared to have started on the outside of the building where the two portable toilets were placed.

A Kula fire crew also responded, and the fire was brought under control at 11:57 p.m. and extinguished at 12:23 a.m. Monday.

Damage to the portable toilets was estimated at $8,000. Damage to the 600-square-foot restroom, located below the swimming pool, was estimated at $31,000.

Mainaga said the restroom sustained heavy roof damage, with approximately 80 percent of the structure damaged.