September 3, 2009 in City

Fire guts southeast Spokane home

By The Spokesman-Review
Photo courtesy of Pam Lehinger photo

Fire gutted a home at 3528 E. Lydia Court early today. Three occupants escaped along with the family pets. Photo courtesy of Pam Lehinger.
(Full-size photo)

Occupants of a home in southeast Spokane escaped a raging fire that destroyed the dwelling early today, according to firefighters and neighbors.

The blaze started about 1 a.m. at the rear deck of the home at 3528 E. Lydia Court and moved into the center of the house, burning through the roof before firefighters could bring it under control.

Three occupants got out safely, including the owners, who were identified as Mike and Joann Vathis. Property records list her name as Joann Rohrbach. Also, the family pets were rescued.

One firefighter suffered a minor injury in the effort to extinguish the fire that neighbors said lit up the cul de sac.

“That’s a miracle they survived that,” said neighbor Pam Lehinger.

Another neighbor who did not give her name said, “It was a matter of seconds and it was engulfed.”

Neighbors also heard a loud explosion that may have come from a propane barbecue tank. They also said the fire apparently started on the deck.

Firefighters said the cause was under investigation.

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