Massive Lockport fire where teen died deemed arson

Sep 8, 2016

Authorities confirm a fire that tore through a Lockport tire recycling plant earlier this month was intentionally set. Lockport mayor Anne McCaffrey announced Wednesday that the official cause of the blaze is arson.

The fire started Aug. 10 at the sprawling High Tread International recycling plant and burned for nearly three days. About 250 firefighters from dozens of fire companies battled the blaze.  

After the fire was extinguished, a body later identified as 14-year-old Joseph Philips, of Lockport, was found in the rubble.  

Authorities said the teen and a couple other juveniles are suspects in the arson. The case of the surviving youths has been turned over to Niagara County officials.  

The fire forced the evacuation of hundreds of people from their homes.