S.L. blaze destroys abandoned building

Fire ripped through an abandoned duplex in downtown Salt Lake early Saturday.

"The building is destroyed," said Salt Lake Fire Deputy Chief Dan Andrus.

The fire at 350 E. 600 South was reported just after 5 a.m. The building was already in bad shape prior to the fire and was scheduled to be demolished, Andrus said.

No full-time residents had lived in the duplex for some time, but Andrus said it was obvious that transients had been living in it. The cause of the fire was still under investigation Saturday, but transients lighting fires to keep warm was one leading theory.

It's the third vacant building in Salt Lake that has caught fire this year in which transients seeking shelter were the prime suspects, Andrus said.

In late January, a four-alarm fire burned the old Club DV8 to the ground. Transients were also suspected of starting that fire. Just a week ago, a fire was reported at a vacant building near 900 South and 200 East.

Andrus noted, however, that these occurrences are common each winter, and although the DV8 fire received more attention than the others, it wasn't all that unusual to have this many fires in abandoned buildings during the winter.

Burglars cover crime by torching a home

WEST VALLEY CITY — Owners of a mobile home in the American Mobile Home Park in West Valley City had insult added to injury Friday afternoon when their home was burglarized then set on fire, according to fire officials.

Just before 4 p.m., the West Valley City Fire Department doused flames coming out of a mobile home located near 3100 South and 1710 West, said West Valley City Fire Department Capt. Jeff Fox. At first sight, it appeared the trailer might be abandoned, but it became clear when firefighters entered the dwelling that it is occupied, Fox said.

One firefighter received minor injuries from breaking glass to enter the trailer, but otherwise, no one was injured, Fox said. The owners were not at home.

An investigation revealed that it had been ignited in three locations by arsonists who wanted to cover up a burglary, Fox said. It is unknown why the burglary was interrupted, or why the burglars torched the trailer, Fox said.

The fire was extinguished before it consumed the whole trailer, but Fox says there some smoke damage in the interior. Ongoing investigations will determine the costs of the damage, Fox said.

UTA offers wireless on all Express buses

The Utah Transit Authority is now running free wireless Internet on all its Express buses that run from county to county.

The service can be found under the title "UTA WiFi" in the list of available wireless networks found on compatible laptops. The cost to offer the service was $225,000. Free WiFi will also be available on the UTA FrontRunner Commuter rail system.

For more information, log on to www.rideuta.com/wifi. Connection assistance is available at 866-470-6897.