August 13, 2011 in Washington Voices

Firefighters help man get to wedding

By The Spokesman-Review
 
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He made it to the wedding on time.

A man on his way to a wedding was running to catch a bus on East Sprague Avenue by Costco last week when he was bumped by a car and knocked to the ground, said Spokane Valley Fire Department Fire Marshal Kevin Miller. Firefighters arrived and determined the man only had a bruised leg, but by then the man had missed his bus.

“Our firefighters called a cab and gave him a card for a free cab ride that’s paid for by our Benevolent Association,” Miller said. “He was able to make it to his cousin’s wedding on time.”

The department responded to several fires in the week prior to Wednesday. The biggest was a mobile home fire in the 7200 block of East Second Avenue on Aug. 9. A neighbor called in the fire and it was fully involved when firefighters arrived. A dog and a cat died in the fire, but no people were injured.

The fire appears to have been started by a faulty air conditioner, Miller said. The mobile home was a total loss.

A couple of cooking fires were reported during the week. On Aug. 6 a resident on East Baldwin Avenue was heating up some oil on the stove when it burst into flames and caught some kitchen cabinets on fire. The homeowner threw the pan of burning oil out his sliding door and turned his attention to putting out the cabinet fire. When he looked outside, his deck was on fire from the burning oil he dumped on it, Miller said. The fire caused about $5,000 in damage.

A juvenile set a small fire next to the railroad tracks at Trent Avenue and Park Road at 5 a.m. on Aug. 8 and he was already in police custody when firefighters arrived, Miller said.

Residents have apparently not gotten the message that a burn ban is now in place. The department responded to six fires that would have been legal a week ago but are now illegal, he said. “Any kind of open fire is all banned right now,” he said. “What’s legal is the portable stuff. Any kind of ground pit, even if it has a screen over it, is illegal.” Barbecues are still legal.

On Aug. 5 the department got two calls asking for the services of arson dog Mako and his handler, fire investigator Rick Freier. They investigated a fatal fire in Ione that killed an elderly woman then went to Wenatchee to investigate a fire that killed two young boys. “It was a long day for him and Mako,” Miller said.

The department responded to 12 noninjury accidents, three minor injury accidents and one accident involving a pedestrian fatality on 32nd Avenue.

A crew also helped the Spokane Valley Police Department by providing a ladder truck at Sprague and Sullivan Road at 1 a.m. on Aug. 4. “They were looking for a burglar they thought might be up on the roof,” Miller said.


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