Three Fires on Mother's Day Keeps Spokane Firefighters Busy

Justin de Ruyter, Spokane Fire PIO,

Monday, May 13, 2024 at 12:16 p.m.

On Mother's Day, three significant fires within the city kept the Spokane Fire Department busy. The initial incident occurred at 6:22 a.m. at Fairview Assisted Living, located at 1617 North Calispel Street. Firefighters responded to a fire alarm activation and discovered a fire in one of the units, where a resident was found actively lighting additional fires. Thanks to the activation of the fire suppression system, the spread of fire and smoke was limited, with some water damage occurring primarily within the affected unit. Quick action from employees who utilized portable fire extinguishers helped to further control the situation. Firefighters extinguished the remaining fire and cleared the building of smoke, with residents evacuated for approximately 20 minutes, fortunately without any reported injuries. The Spokane Police Department also responded due to suspicions of intentional fire setting, initiating an investigation that is currently active.

Later in the day, at 3:55 p.m., another fire broke out in the 2200 block of East Glass Avenue. A neighbor observed smoke emanating from the back patio of a home and promptly alerted the occupants while reporting the incident to 9-1-1. Engine 15 arrived within three minutes, confirming a fire on the back patio extending into the home's second story. Firefighters encountered multiple propane cylinders venting their contents, exacerbating the intensity of the fire. Firefighters deployed multiple hose lines to combat the flames, bringing the situation under control in less than 15 minutes. The exact cause of the fire remains undetermined, with estimated damages totaling $150,000 in losses offset by saved property valued at $200,000.

The third fire occurred at the Waste to Energy facility on 2900 South Geiger Boulevard at 9:46 p.m. Engine 6 arrived within seven minutes, finding black smoke and flames emanating from a building on the south side connected to the main warehouse. Firefighters extinguished the blaze, preventing its spread to adjacent structures, and had it under control within ten minutes. An investigation revealed the cause to be accidental electrical ignition from a damaged 480-volt three-phase extension cord. Although losses amounted to $60,000, firefighters saved property valued at over $500,000.