A fire that destroyed a large garage Wednesday afternoon on Spokane’s South Hill drew a major response from area agencies and forced road closures.
Spokane County Fire District 8 Assistant Chief Chris Wyrobek said units contained the blaze to the garage at 6626 S. Regal Road, but smoke caused some damage inside the home.
Wyrobek said 911 received a call from the property owner’s alarm company shortly before 12:30 p.m., followed by phone calls from people reporting the fire.
He said the first units on scene attacked the fire right away and searched the house. Occupants had already exited.
Wyrobek said the blaze destroyed what he believed was a three- or four-car garage.
He said crews knocked down the fire and were extinguishing hot spots as of early Wednesday afternoon. They planned to be on scene for several hours to eliminate hot spots and make sure fire investigators were safe.
He said it appeared the fire started in the garage, but he was unsure of the exact origin.
There were no injuries. A portion of South Regal Road and East 65th Avenue were closed.
Spokane and Spokane Valley fire departments also responded, as well as American Medical Response. Wyrobek said medical personnel were there as a precaution.
Lillian Tang said she didn’t think much of it when she saw two fire trucks roll by her East 65th Avenue home.
“Then I heard a couple more and thought, ‘Hmm,’” she said. “So I looked out the window and this billowing black smoke was coming right over there (signaling south).”
In addition to the black smoke, Tang, who watched from her upstairs window, said she heard what she believed was some kind of an explosion and saw shrubs or trees catch fire. Eventually the black smoke turned white, she said.
Watching the smoke rise into the partly cloudy skies made Tang a little anxious as it reminded her of the 1991 firestorm in which dozens of wildfires destroyed more than 100 homes and scorched thousands of acres in Eastern Washington and North Idaho.
Tang said she moved to the South Hill home she lives in now about five months before the October 1991 firestorm, which spared her home.
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