According to fire Lt. Brian Keyes, the container was inches from the building and adjacent to a ground-mounted electrical transformer. When firefighters arrived on the scene four minutes after the alarm, flames were shooting up as far as the roofline of the side of the two-story building.
The fire was first reported minutes after 7 p.m. in the waste container behind the Granite State Music Hall at 546 Main St.
He said firefighters were able to extinguish the fire quickly. An aerial ladder was used to check whether the fire had extended into the building or caused damage to the roof.
Keyes said about a dozen employees of the music venue, who had been inside the building, were alerted by sounding smoke detectors and had evacuated the building by the time fire crews arrived on the scene.
Keyes said the fire is under investigation, but he declined to elaborate.
However, Keyes said the facility was able to reopen Wednesday.
Electric utility Eversource inspected the transformer and found that it was undamaged except for scorched paint on the outer case, Keyes said.
While firefighters were on the scene the department received a call for a second fire at 14 Hoyt Court, less than 1 mile away.
The occupant at that address heard smoke detectors sounding and found that the battery charger in the entertainment center under the television was on fire. The occupant was able to use a neighbor’s fire extinguisher to put out the fire, Keyes said.