House fire leads to discovery of marijuana grow operation

RENTON, Wash. -- Renton firefighters were surprised when they arrived at a house fire Friday morning and found a large marijuana grow operation.

Fire crews were called to a home in the 300 block of Lind Avenue Northwest just before 9 a.m. after neighbors saw dark smoke coming from a power meter mounted on the side of the house, according to Renton police.

Crews arrived on scene moments later and attacked the fire while evacuating the home's residents. As they were battling the blaze, firefighters discovered what is described as a "large marijuana grow operation" inside the house, according to police.

Investigators say the house's electrical junction box had been rewired to feed the lights and ventilation supporting the grow, and it may have overloaded the electrical supply system.

Firefighters called in narcotics detectives from the Renton Police Department, who collected evidence at the scene. Police didn't make any arrests, but the investigation is ongoing and charges may be filed later.