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Washington Voices

Fire crews have low-key week

Sat., Jan. 26, 2013

Spokane Valley Fire Department crews responded to mostly minor fires and 191 EMS calls during the week of Jan. 17-23.

There was an electrical panel fire at Global Fitness near Sprague Avenue and Pines Road at 9:43 a.m. on Tuesday. “It didn’t cause very much damage to the building itself, just mainly to the panel and the wiring around it,” said assistant fire marshal Bill Clifford.

A passerby reported seeing electrical arcing in an Avista substation in the 19000 block of East Euclid Avenue at 4 a.m. on Jan. 18. Crews could see footprints leading away from a hole cut in the fence when they arrived, Clifford said. It appeared that someone was cutting and stealing live copper wires, which started the fire, he said. “It’s very surprising that we don’t respond to these and find somebody dead,” he said.

A small fire was reported in an apartment in the 700 block of North McDonald Road the evening of Jan. 17. “Somebody’s electrical blanket on their bed shorted out and caught fire,” he said. The resident was home and was able to remove the blanket from the building, he said.

A car fire extended to an apartment building just after 1 p.m. Sunday at 2400 N. Wilbur Road. Neighbors were reportedly able to push the car out of the garage and limit the damage to the building. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, Clifford said.

An RV was parked in a parking lot at 3300 N. Pines Road on Tuesday. The people living in the RV were asked to leave the property and the RV caught on fire when they tried to start it up, Clifford said. The RV was a total loss.

Crews responded to a natural gas leak just before 3 p.m. on Jan. 18 in the 18600 block of East Turtle Lane. “A vehicle slid into a gas meter on a home,” Clifford said. “The area was cordoned off. People were evacuated from their homes.”

A malfunctioning heating unit was pumping carbon monoxide into a business at 4630 E. Sprague Ave. the afternoon of Jan. 18. People in the building were experiencing nausea, vomiting and light-headedness, Clifford said. Crews shut down the heating unit and treated the people who were ill.

There were 11 car accidents among the 224 calls crews responded to during the week. Only one person required a trip to the hospital for minor injuries.

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