Fire at former South Weymouth Naval Air Station deemed arson, reward offered

WEYMOUTH — Investigators have determined that someone intentionally started a massive fire in a set of abandoned military buildings at the former South Weymouth Naval Air Station.

The two-alarm fire started on Thursday and tore through the buildings at 223 Shea Memorial Drive at Union Point. The roof of one of the buildings collapsed, according to reports from the scene, forcing Shea Memorial Drive at Route 18 to be closed, as well as Memorial Grove Avenue at the Union Point Sports Complex.

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A fire investigation team, made up of Weymouth police and firefighters and State Police attached to the Office of the State Fire Marshal, asks anyone with information about the fire to call the confidential Arson Hotline at 1-800-682-9229.

The hotline is part of the Arson Watch Reward Program which provides rewards of up to $5,000 for information that helps solve cases. The program is funded by the property and casualty insurance companies of Massachusetts.

Mayor Robert Hedlund on Friday likened a very large wooden building at the site to a “a tinderbox.”

The Weymouth Historical Society said the buildings were used as the bachelor officers’ quarters. The society said the buildings had not been maintained for many years and were to be torn down, paving the way for new development.

 Reporter Joe Difazio can be reached