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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Fire roundup: Mysterious explosion on North Sunnydale Drive in Spokane Valley

The Spokane Valley Fire Department responded to a mysterious explosion followed by a brush fire reported by residents on June 9.

Firefighters responded to a call at 9:43 a.m. from the 5000 block of North Sunnyvale Drive. When crews arrived at the scene, they found a large fire burning in a field about 100 yards from a residence.

The homeowner had a large debris pit with a pile of dead trees and branches that he had been burning over Memorial Day weekend using 30 gallons of fuel. When the homeowner piled more debris on the pile the following weekend, it re-ignited the fire and an explosion ensued which shook his house, he said.

Crews attempted to extinguish the fire, which was difficult because of weather conditions, so they monitored the fire until it was able to burn out. Fire investigators and the Department of Natural Resources also responded to the scene. It was found the homeowner did have a burning permit for the debris pit.

Other calls June 4-10

June 8: Crews responded at about 7:30 a.m. to a three-car pileup on the Interstate 90 freeway near the Freya Street overpass. One vehicle was partially wedged in the back of a semi-truck. One person was transported to hospital for nonlife-threatening injuries.

June 8: Firefighters responded at 6 p.m. to a trailer fire on I-90 near the Flora Road overpass. A vehicle was towing a 12-by-6 trailer that caught fire. The driver said the cause of the fire was unknown and denied that a discarded cigarette could have contributed to it. Crews used 500 gallons of water to ensure the fire was extinguished.

June 9: Firefighters responded to a report of smoke at about 11 p.m. from the Pope Francis Haven Apartments on the 16400 block of East Sprague Avenue. Upon arrival, they found residents having a barbecue between two cars in the parking lot. Crews advised the residents to clear the barbecue so it was away from buildings and vehicles.

June 10: Crews responded at about 3 a.m. to a report of a car on fire in a field on the 10900 block of East Nixon Avenue. The interior of the car was on fire when crews arrived at the scene. The fire was extinguished quickly. A neighbor said a homeless man lived in the car. Crews observed a camping tent, food and blankets, but no signs of an occupant.

June 10: Firefighters responded at 1:15 p.m. to a report of a mother and her children trapped in an elevator on the 6300 block of East Fourth Avenue. Crews were able to access the elevator with a key and recall the elevator from the third to the first floor. Everyone got out of the elevator safely.

By the numbers: The Spokane Valley Fire Department during the week of June 4-10 responded to 337 calls including 23 fire calls, 11 alarm system responses, 267 emergency medical service calls, one extrication call, one water rescue, three hazardous materials calls, 28 motor vehicle accidents and four service calls.

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