Crime

Fire damages Whatcom County house; no one hurt

Watch firefighters battle fire at house on Woodlyn Road near Ferndale

Firefighters from North Whatcom Fire and Rescue and Whatcom County Fire District 7 respond to a fire on Thursday, March 24, on Woodlyn Road near Ferndale, Wash.
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Firefighters from North Whatcom Fire and Rescue and Whatcom County Fire District 7 respond to a fire on Thursday, March 24, on Woodlyn Road near Ferndale, Wash.

A fire tore through the second story of a house east of Ferndale Thursday afternoon, March 24.

A woman driving on Pole Road saw smoke coming from the second story of the house at 6814 Woodlyn Road around 12:45 p.m. She pulled over and called 911 before the homeowner, who was weeding down the road, realized what was happening.

No one else was home, and no one was hurt.

Fire crews from North Whatcom and Fire District 7 saw flames coming from the house as they arrived at the scene. About a half-hour later the fire was knocked down. Most of the damage was on the second floor. Pockets of open sky could be seen through the attic.

“I still see flames coming off the roof,” Randy Assink, the homeowner, said around 1:30 p.m.

Assink said he’d lived at the home with his family — his wife and four kids, three of whom are now adults — for about 13 years. He believed the fire most likely started in an upstairs master bedroom. But he wasn’t sure about the cause.

Firefighters believed the fire started on the second floor, confirmed Fire District 7 Division Chief Dean Crosswhite. The exact cause remains under investigation.

Assessor’s records show the home was built in 1931. The top floor took heavy flame damage, while smoke and water damaged the first floor.

“The structure itself we consider saved,” Crosswhite said — especially considering the intensity of the fire as the first engines reached the scene.

The building has an assessed value of about $127,000. A three-door garage and other attachments to the main structure weren’t damaged.

Firefighters rescued a black-and-white cat from the house. Antique furniture, old books and other mementos were carried outside, too, and set on the lawn.

Caleb Hutton: 360-715-2276, @bhamcaleb

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