Trailer park blaze on Division challenges firefighters

Discover why fire crews had to deal with more than just a ‘single-wide’ aflame …

Closely-spaced mobile homes made fighting this early-morning trailer park fire difficult. Dick Harris, PF&R photo

By David F. Ashton
In the early morning hours following Labor Day, Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) crews were alerted to a fire at a trailer park by a 9-1-1 call at about 3:30 a.m. on September 2.

When the ladder truck and engine companies of PF&R Mill Park Station 7 rolled to the Rainbow Villa Mobile Home Park located at 11803 SE Division Street in outer East Portland, the fire and smoke spewing from Unit 29 was obvious from a block away.

The Engineer with PF&R Mill Park Station 7 pressurize water lines to fight the “single-wide” fire, and protect other mobile homes in close proximity. Dick Harris, PF&R photo

“Firefighters found a ‘single-wide’ mobile home, with fire showing from the rear of the structure,” reported PF&R Public Information Officer Lt. Damon Simmons.

“After ensuring that the homes’ occupants were outside and safe, firefighters began attacking the fire,” Simmons said.

After electricity and natural gas are turned off, firefighters start extinguishing the blaze. Dick Harris, PF&R photo

Just squeezing in between the mobile homes was a challenge; the blazing house trailer was within two feet of other dwellings. “Other challenges were a live downed electric power line, and a gas line that was damaged,” reported Simmons.

NW Natural and Portland General Electric each shut down the utilities to the affected unit, and the fire was extinguished. “No injuries were associated with this fire,” Simmons said.

After the fire is knocked down, smoke issues from the burned house trailer. Dick Harris, PF&R photo

According to the PF&R Investigator, Simmons later told East Portland News, this fire started near the power pole behind Space 29; official finding: “Cause: electrical failure.”

Volunteers with the American Red Cross Willamette Chapter provided shelter and personal care items for two male and two female residents affected by the fire.

> On our Front Page: PF&R Official Photographer Dick Harris captures Truck 7’s Engineer making sure water lines are pressurized.

© 2014 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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