Michele Anderson, Public Safety Communications Manager
Wednesday, December 12, 2018 at 11:36 a.m.
Fire investigators with the Spokane Fire Department’s Special Investigation Unit say an overheated lint-filled bathroom fan caused last night’s fire. The fan was an older unit that overheated and the lint in and around the motor caught fire.
Fire officials say bathroom exhaust fans can present a fire hazard if they are not cleaned and maintained on a regular basis. Fans should also be installed on a timer switch as they are not designed to operate at all hours.
Last evening, the Spokane Fire Department as well as units from Spokane County Fire District 9 responded to 202 E Wedgewood Ave. around 9 p.m. to a report of an apartment fire.
Upon arrival, fire crews discovered a fire in the bathroom of a ground floor apartment unit. A disabled woman within was unable to escape and first arriving firefighters carried the woman to safety. The fire was immediately upgraded in order for additional resources to respond to the incident. Firefighters quickly extinguished the fire, searched for additional victims and provided medical care to the woman. Quick action with a dry chemical fire extinguisher by one of the apartment occupants prior to fire department arrival significantly limited the extent of the damage.
The family of four that occupied the fire apartment and displaced by the incident will be staying with relatives until the fire damage is repaired. The disabled woman carried out by firefighters was transported to a local hospital for further evaluation.
There were no reported injuries to firefighters.