Fire damages Bellingham apartment complex

THE BELLINGHAM HERALDMay 19, 2013 

YORK STREET FIRE

Herald reader Bob Reeves sent this photo of firefighters at an apartment complex at 1060 York St. on Sunday, May 19, 2013.

BOB REEVES — COURTESY TO THE BELLINGHAM HERALD

BELLINGHAM - One family was displaced as fire damaged an apartment complex west of Civic Field on Sunday evening, May 20.

Fire started outside in a bush near the two-story building at 1060 York St., then raced up the exterior to the eaves and ran into the attic, said Assistant Chief Bill Hewett of the Bellingham Fire Department.

Firefighters arrived within minutes of the 7:20 p.m. fire and made an aggressive attack to keep the flames from spreading across the attic, Hewett said. The officer of the first-due engine company reported heavy smoke and flames from the building.

"The engine crew was able to knock it down pretty quickly from the exterior," he said.

Hewett estimated damage at $40,000. No injuries were reported.

The fire was extinguished within 15 minutes, Hewett said. Firefighters remained for a little more than an hour to pull siding and ceilings, making sure that fire hadn't spread.

About 20 firefighters were summoned, Hewett said, including four engine companies and an aerial ladder truck, an ambulance and two supervising officers. Once a "working fire" was confirmed, the incident was upgraded to a second alarm, an action Hewett called a formality that alerts Fire Department and medical staff officers but doesn't necessarily commit additional resources.

Cause was unknown, pending an investigation.

Robert Mittendorf is a Herald copy editor and page designer. Contact him at 360-756-2805 or at robert.mittendorf@bellinghamherald.com.

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