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Emergency calls increase for Valley Fire

Sat., June 9, 2007

The volume of emergencies handled by Valley Fire went up significantly last week, with 225 reported between May 29 and Monday. Eight structure fires were called in, including a house fire at 311 N. Sargent Road on May 29 that caused $15,000 in damage, said department spokesman Bill Clifford.

On June 1 a fire at Savemore Building Supply caused $400 in damage after oily rags in a trash can ignited, Clifford said. Oily rags should be kept in a separate metal container, he said.

There were six brush fires reported, including a small grass fire started by a downed power line and another that Clifford said may have been set by fireworks, which are illegal in Spokane County.

“We will be patrolling the area for that,” as the Fourth of July approaches, he said.

Three trash fires included an illegal burn and a fire in a trash bin that caused minimal damage, he said. Of 13 fire alarms received by the department, all turned out to be false or minor.

On May 31 a motorist became trapped under a car after he stopped to help another driver with a flat at 1510 N. Argonne Road, Clifford said. While removing the spare from under the vehicle, the jack slipped out and the car fell on him. A third motorist pulled over to help, and she got the jack back under the car and lifted it off the victim, Clifford said.

In other vehicular mishaps, there were 16 accidents that week resulting in five trips to the hospital and a report of a Jet Ski floating riderless down the Spokane River on June 3.

Firefighters rallied for a water rescue but found its driver safely on shore, Clifford said. There was no word on the fate of the wayward watercraft.

Medical emergencies “jumped up quite a bit,” Clifford said, with 171 reported. Two hazardous materials calls and four service calls rounded out the week.


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