‘Careless smoker’ lights up Argay neighborhood

Find out why firefighters had a fight on their hands when they worked to extinguish the blaze, accidentally set, in a manufactured home …

Firefighters open the garage roof, to extinguish the blaze from above and check for fire extensions.

By David F. Ashton; photos by Dick Harris, PF&R
A manufactured home was ablaze when crews from Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) arrived on November 26 at 10:48 a.m. – just four minutes after the call came in – at 14308 NE Sandy Blvd.

“Firefighters were responding to an initial call of a ‘garage on fire’,” reported PF&R spokesman, Paul Corah. “They found a manufactured home on fire, which was threatening nearby manufactured homes.”

A safety alert was issued for firefighters attacking this blaze, Corah told us, because the garage roof partially collapsed during firefighting operations, creating potentially hazardous conditions for firefighters. The fire was primarily confined to the garage area of the manufactured home. “The fire was brought under control at 11:06 a.m.”

A firefighter sprays “Class A Foam” – a wetting agent and fire retardant – as crew members make sure it penetrates all of the overhaul materials removed from the burning garage.

“Although the two occupants in the home escaped the fire safely,” Corah pointed out, “both were treated at the scene by PF&R paramedics for smoke inhalation; their injuries did not necessitate transport to a hospital.”

A bureau investigator determined that the fire was caused by a smoker’s carelessness, the fire bureau spokesman later said, and no damage estimates are available at this time.

“The occupants initially tried to put out the fire with a fire extinguisher before calling 9-1-1,” concluded Corah. “PF&R reminds citizens that if you see a fire, call 9-1-1 immediately and always extinguish smoking materials before you leave the room.”

There isn’t much left of the garage. And, all this damage, fire officials say, was due to “careless smoking”.

© 2010 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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