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Bellingham Fire responds to dryer fire at Juvenile Detention Center

Here's why firefighters were at the Whatcom County Courthouse Monday

Bellingham firefighters responded to a report of a dryer fire at the Whatcom County Juvenile Detention Center, 311 Grand Ave., Monday afternoon. No injuries were reported and the building was not evacuated.
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Bellingham firefighters responded to a report of a dryer fire at the Whatcom County Juvenile Detention Center, 311 Grand Ave., Monday afternoon. No injuries were reported and the building was not evacuated.

Bellingham Fire crews responded to an appliance fire at the Whatcom County Juvenile Detention Center at 4:55 p.m. Monday.

No injuries were reported, according to Assistant Fire Chief Bill Hewett, and the facility did not need to be evacuated.

“They were able to move some of the kids around in the center to safe areas, and we weren’t required to do a full evacuation,” Hewett said.

Three engines, a ladder truck, a battalion chief, a medic unit and and EMS supervisor responded to the scene at 311 Grand Ave. in Bellingham, with some smoke showing from the fourth or fifth floor, according to emergency radio traffic. Law enforcement was requested at 5:06 p.m., though there was no need to evacuate the facility.

By 5:37 p.m., fire fighters used extinguishers to put out the fire, which originated in a commercial dryer, Hewett said.

“For us, it was two-fold – it being a six-story occupancy, with the fire on the six floor, that’s a challenge for us,” Hewett said. “Then, whenever you have a facility that has folks incarcerated or locked in, you always worry about a safe evacuation. ... But everybody did a real good job keeping everyone safe.”

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