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Auto shop set on fire in Pialba is suspected to be arson

Police guard the scene of a fire which broke out at a business on Boat Harbour Dr, which is believed to have been set alight on Sunday night.
Police guard the scene of a fire which broke out at a business on Boat Harbour Dr, which is believed to have been set alight on Sunday night. Alistair Brightman

A FIRE on Boat Harbour Dr that destroyed one business and damaged several others is being treated as suspicious by police.

It is believed the person or people responsible broke into A1 Auto, located within Central Plaza, Urraween, between 3.15pm and 10.45pm on Sunday, before setting the rear of the building alight.

A1 Auto manger Jamie Brown, who was alerted to the fire on Sunday night, said he was devastated.

"They've let the other stores in to see their shops but my roof has caved in so I can't get into my place yet," he said.

"I managed to get to the door last night but that's as far as I could get."

Mr Brown said he had no idea when he might be back in business.

"I have to wait for my insurance to contact me and go from there," he said.

"Hopefully it's soon though.

"I've got staff I need to pay and bills to pay."

Meanwhile staff from neighbouring business Sport First congregated outside the store yesterday morning in their uniforms, unsure of when they might be back at work.

"We have no idea what's going to happen now," one staff member said.

Police and fire services rushed to the scene after fire alarms alerted security.

A crime scene was later declared, with the area cordoned off by police.

Crime Scene police from Brisbane came to Hervey Bay yesterday to investigate.

A Queensland Police spokeswoman said it was believed offenders may have used some type of accelerant to start a blaze before fleeing the scene.

"All fires are treated as suspicious until proven otherwise," she said.

"However it is believed at this stage the fire is suspicious due to evidence at the scene that suggests the place has been entered illegally."

While police said there was no direct fire damage to the two neighbouring businesses which included Arts and Crafts Superstore, both received smoke damage to stock.

According to police no arrests have been made and police are calling for anyone with information to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.



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