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Small Fire Damages Fenway Park

August 4, 1999

BOSTON (AP) _ A worker’s blowtorch was blamed for a small fire at Fenway Park this morning that damaged a restroom wall and forced the Red Sox to close one entrance to the park for 30 minutes.

The fire broke out shortly after 11:30 a.m. in a wall outside a rooftop bathroom along the third base line. No injuries were reported and the 1:05 p.m. game against the Cleveland Indians was expected to start on time.

There are seats on the roof, but no one was there at the time.

The park was not evacuated, but the team delayed opening the gates along Yawkey Way. Gates usually would have opened at 11:35 a.m.

Firefighters extinguished the fire in about five minutes.

Steve MacDonald, a spokesman for the Boston Fire Department, said the accidental fire caused about $25,000 in damage. Fire crews had to rip out some of the walls ensure the flames didn’t spread.

Workers had been doing some repairs to the ballpark’s roof when the torch ignited some wood in the bathroom’s interior walls.

MacDonald said the age of the ballpark _ built in 1912 _ had nothing to do with the fire.

``Age has nothing to do with this,″ MacDonald said. ``It’s an accidental fire.″

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