Crews respond to two-alarm duplex fire in Vancouver


Couple had to escape from second-level unit of residence

VANCOUVER — For the second time in a week, occupants of a Vancouver residence had to be rescued from an upper unit in a multi-family blaze. 

Just after 9 a.m. Friday, Vancouver Fire Department crews were dispatched to the report of a fire at a pair of duplexes in the 3600 block of Olive Street. Photo by Mike Schultz
Just after 9 a.m. Friday, Vancouver Fire Department crews were dispatched to the report of a fire at a pair of duplexes in the 3600 block of Olive Street. Photo by Mike Schultz

Just after 9 a.m. Friday (July 31), Vancouver Fire Department (VPD) crews were dispatched to the report of a fire at a pair of duplexes in the 3600 block of Olive Street. Prior to the arrival of the first fire truck, the boyfriend of an occupant in one of the upstairs units had to lower his girlfriend from the balcony of their second level residence. 

Firefighters witnessed the rescue as they arrived and then quickly got a ladder in position for the male to climb down to safety but the male couldn’t wait for the ladder. 

“Our officer pulled a ladder off the first engine and threw the ladder up there just as he jumped down,’’ explained VPD Captain Joe Spatz. “He had smoke rolling out behind the property, a lot of heat.’’

Vancouver Fire Department and Clark County Fire District 6 crews responded to a two-alarm fire Friday morning in Vancouver. Photo by Mike Schultz
Vancouver Fire Department and Clark County Fire District 6 crews responded to a two-alarm fire Friday morning in Vancouver. Photo by Mike Schultz

Spatz reported that occupants in the other upstairs unit were temporarily trapped after stairwells had burned, but he said they hopped onto their neighbors balcony and were able to escape.

Crews were able to extinguish the fire that included a stubborn attic blaze. The fire involved all four units of the two duplexes. 

A total of 40 firefighters from the Vancouver Fire Department and Clark County Fire District 6 responded to the incident. According to fire officials, the blaze started between the two buildings. A total of eight residents and four pets were displaced by the fire.

The cause of the fire is being investigated by the Vancouver Fire Marshal’s Office. It was initially unknown if any residents were injured in the fire. No firefighters were injured. 

Occupants of the upstairs units of a Vancouver duplex had to be rescued from a balcony when the stairwells to their residence were burned in a blaze. Photo by Mike Schultz
Occupants of the upstairs units of a Vancouver duplex had to be rescued from a balcony when the stairwells to their residence were burned in a blaze. Photo by Mike Schultz
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