Seattle Fire Responds to Multiple Weekend Fires

SEATTLE – Over the weekend, firefighters responded to multiple fires, including three vacant building fires.

On Saturday, December 2, at 5:41 p.m., dispatchers received multiple calls about a residential fire in the 4500 block of 9th Avenue NE. Firefighters responded to find flames visible from a 1-story wood-frame structure with a basement. Engine 17 had water on the fire by 5:51 p.m., primary and secondary searches of the building were complete and the fire extinguished by 6:35 p.m. The vacant building had a previous fire on September 9, 2017. Fire investigators ruled the fire accidental and determined that unauthorized occupants most likely ignited combustible material.

On Sunday, December 3, at 10:51 p.m., dispatchers received a call reporting a residential fire near 15th Ave NW and NW 80th Street. Large amounts of heavy, black smoke were visible to the north and flames were coming from the vacant structure when crews arrived. Firefighters attacked the fire from outside the 2-story wood-frame building. The structure began to collapse and four additional engines and one ladder truck were added to the response. One firefighter sustained minor injuries. Due to extreme fire damage, fire investigators were unable to determine the cause of the fire. The building was scheduled for demolition on Monday, December 5.

On Monday, December 4, at 4:55 a.m., dispatchers received a report of a fire in a vacant building in the 9500 block of Ashworth Avenue North. Engine 31 was the first arriving unit at the incident. Crews applied water to the fire from outside the building, and then transitioned to inside of the building to push fire out. Primary and secondary searches were completed, and no injuries were reported. The fire was under control at 5:34 a.m. and completely extinguished by 5:42 a.m. Investigators determined the fire was caused from a warming fire started by unauthorized occupants in the building.

Abandoned buildings pose a significant risk to responding emergency personnel. Seattle Fire has specific procedures for combating vacant building fires, including fighting the fire from outside the structure.