Spokane Valley Fire Department investigators concluded that an improperly discarded cigarette caused the two alarm fire in the Central Park Condominiums, 6019 E. 6th Avenue, shortly after 8:30 pm on August 19. The fire killed the elderly male occupant of the unit where the fire started and damaged or destroyed 15 units in the 69-unit structure before firefighters stopped the blaze.
The first SVFD unit on the scene of the fire observed smoke and flames coming from the roof of the three-story multi-unit structure and upgraded the incident to a working fire, bringing more resources to the scene. The fire was upgraded again to a second alarm fire, bringing manpower and resources to total seven engines, four ladder companies and over 45 firefighters. Two brush trucks were also requested to protect the large slope of dry grass immediately adjacent to the structure on fire.
Due to safety concerns about the stability of the structure, firefighters eventually took a defensive approach to the fire, working only from the outside of the structure to extinguish the fire. With rapid and coordinated fire attack, firefighters contained the fire to the western end of the large building, keeping the fire from spreading to the adjacent units in the same building.
Crews from Spokane Fire Department and Spokane County Fire District 8 also responded to this fire. Spokane County Sheriff’s Office provided traffic control and building evacuation. The Red Cross was on the scene assisting affected residents.