2nd fire to erupt at vacant Splash Kingdom water park in Redlands this year investigated as ‘suspicious’

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Firefighters on Friday morning were called out to extinguish a blaze at Splash Kingdom in Redlands, the second time this year a destructive fire erupted at the water park.

The Redlands Fire Department released a photo of the fire at Splash Kingdom on Oct. 16, 2020.
The Redlands Fire Department released a photo of the fire at Splash Kingdom on Oct. 16, 2020.

In the latest incident, crews were met by heavy flames and smoke when they responded to a report of a structure fire at the water park, located at 1101 California St., around 7 a.m., according to the Redlands Fire Department.

It took firefighters about 30 minutes to put out the blaze, which caused “extensive damage” to all slides on the vacant property, a Fire Department news release stated. Twenty-two total personnel — 16 from Redlands and six Loma Linda firefighters — were dispatched to the scene to douse the flames.

No injuries were reported.

It’s not known what sparked the fire, but authorities are investigating it as “suspicious,” officials said.

The blaze was the second to erupt at Splash Kingdom in less than six months. Redlands firefighters also responded to a three-alarm fire that broke out at the pyramid-style building along the 10 Freeway on the morning of May 2.

It caused about $750,000 in damages to the structure.

The Redlands Fire Department released this photo from the Splash Kingdom water park in Redlands after a fire on May 2, 2020.
The Redlands Fire Department released this photo from the Splash Kingdom water park in Redlands after a fire on May 2, 2020.

The circumstances surround that fire, too, were deemed “suspicious,” according to the Press-Enterprise. A cause was not yet known.

The latest blaze occurred three days after the Redlands Planning Commission signaled it would begin the process of revoking the water park’s permit to operate, the newspaper reported.

Splash Kingdom has been closed during the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in extensive vandalism on the vacant property, the operator told the commission, according to the Press-Enterprise.

The 17-acre water park — which was called “Pharaoh’s Lost Kingdom” when it opened 1996 but has since changed ownership — previously faced trouble over code violations.

The land is also situated next to a large distribution facility tied to Amazon that went up in flames this past June.

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