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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Discarded cigarette ignites Pullman apartment building, fire department says

A fire started by a cigarette at a Pullman apartment complex caused $10,000 in damage Friday night, officials said.

Residents of the burning apartment complex at 1024 Latah St. called 911 around 5:45 p.m. Friday to report a balcony fire, according to a Pullman Fire Department news release.

One resident tried to put out the fire with an extinguisher before police arrived. The resident found the extinguisher was out-of-date, the release said.

Two Pullman police officers who arrived first used their fire extinguishers to curb the blaze while residents escaped, before firefighters arrived and extinguished the remaining embers, the release said.

Heat from the fire melted the vinyl siding on the apartment building and the staircase, and smoke damaged one unit.

Fire investigator Tony Nuttman determined an improperly discarded cigarette started the fire.

All residents returned to their apartments after firefighters removed the vinyl siding and cleared the walkway, the release said.