Crews were called out to reports of a hotel on fire Saturday in Whitley County. Fire investigators say the early morning blaze may have been intentionally set.
Just after 6 a.m., 50 firefighters and a total of 5 fire departments rushed to the Mountain View Lodge off Cumberland Falls Highway. When they arrived on scene, firefighters say they saw smoke coming from different ends of the building. The fire was located in one of the hotel’s 300 rooms.
Corbin police detectives say they were immediately suspicious about the fire because the hotel has been closed for several years and the electricity shut off.
“No body was supposed to be in here we found some evidence that people had been staying here… Mail and clothing things like that,” said William Rose from the Corbin Police Dept.
Detectives say there was no one else on the scene when they arrived, and so far they haven’t pin-pointed a cause.
“Don’t know yet how it started, but the fire was mainly in one room and spread out into the hallway,” said Rose.
Corbin firefighters say they needed help with the building because the hydrants up on the hill here weren’t supplying enough water. Firefighters from West Knox, Woodbine, Keavy and Oak Grove also responded to the blaze.
Although no one was staying in the hotel, officials say it could have been a lot worse.
“It could have been a total loss, the fire department got here quick and was able to get it under control pretty fast,” said Rose.
According to a sign on the front of the building – the hotel was shut down by the franklin circuit court for not paying taxes.