Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Cause of Late Night Dumpster Fire at Ukiah’s Burger King Perplexes Investigators 

[This is not a picture of the incident described, but a stock photograph taken by Matt LaFever]

Yesterday, in the early morning darkness, Ukiah Valley Fire Authority personnel responded to reports of a dumpster fire around 1:15  in the parking lot of Burger King at 711 East Perkins Street.

Acting Battalion Chief John Corippo said the fire burned fast, destroying most of the contents of the dumpster, and was controlled quickly.

What remains unknown is how exactly that dumpster fire began. Corippo told us surveillance footage of the scene did not depict any person or thing near the dumpster that could have ignited the flames.

Footage from the scene captured a darkened dumpster, “then a small flame lick up, and it went up in two minutes, putting up a good sized fireball.”

 “Whatever happened was cloaked in the darkness of the night.”

Corippo added there was no evidence the dumpster contained anything that could spontaneously combust such as oil-soaked rags. “It was mostly filled with paper products”.

Corripo, admitting he had no evidence to corroborate his theory, said, “I’m assuming someone threw something in there and walked away.”

The danger presented by the fire was limited. Corippo said the dumpster sat in the middle of an asphalt parking lot with a concrete wall built around it with no immediate vegetation. Another dynamic suppressing the chance of spread was the low temperatures in the early morning.



  1. The homeless situation in Ukiah is a “dumpster fire”. Elected officials need to be held accountable for their lack of dealing with the ever growing problem.

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Matt LaFever
Matt LaFeverhttps://mendofever.com/
I like to think of myself as a reporter for the Average Joe. Journalism has become a craft defined largely by city dwellers on America's coasts. It’s time to take it back. I have been an Emerald Triangle resident since 2006 and this is year ten in Mendocino County. Please, email me at matthewplafever@gmail.com if you know a story that needs to be told.

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