Montavilla blaze injures one, chars house and garage

See why fire officials say this was a difficult fire to fight …

Flames and smoke shoot from the garage of a Montavilla home as firefighters arrive. Dick Harris, PF&R photo

By David F. Ashton

When Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) crews were dispatched to fight a garage fire in Montavilla at 5:49 a.m. on August 15, they found difficult circumstances when they arrived.

The PF&R Montavilla Station Engine 19 crew reported flames leaping from the garage, and thick black smoke billowing out from under the eaves of the outer East Portland building.

A firefighter cuts into the roof, opening it for “vertical ventilation”, allowing super-heated, potentially explosive gasses to escape. Dick Harris, PF&R photo

“Arriving firefighters found a garage fire that was difficult to access,” said PF&R spokesperson Dan Watson. “Heavy smoke and debris initially obscured the location of the fire,” he explained.

“During fire operations, firefighters and command on-scene also found fire in the attic of the adjacent house,” Watson said.

Additional firefighters attack a garage fire that extended to the house next door. Dick Harris, PF&R photo

By mid-morning firefighters had extinguished the fires in both the house and the garage.

“An occupant was treated for smoke inhalation on-scene,” reported Watson.

PF&R Fire Investigators have not yet released the cause of the fire, nor have they issued a damage estimate.

Firefighter/Paramedics treat a victim for smoke inhalation. Dick Harris, PF&R photo

© 2015 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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