Home sprinklers save day in Ridgefield

Official: System limits fire damage to about $30,000

By Dave Kern, Columbian assistant metro editor

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A sprinkler system is credited for limiting fire damage Sunday to a house in rural Ridgefield.

The fire started in the garage at 5608 N.W. 234th St. about 3:45 p.m., said Battalion Chief Tim Dawdy of Clark County Fire & Rescue.

He said a sprinkler head in the garage was activated and helped firefighters contain the blaze. Damage was estimated at about $30,000.

“This was way out there,” Dawdy said. The owners, Dan and Sherri Willette, were not home. A neighbor saw smoke and called 911.

Seventeen firefighters with five big rigs responded, Dawdy said. The fire is under investigation.

Dawdy said Sherri Willette did not want a sprinkler system put in the home when it was built in 2005. County regulations required it, though.

Now, Dawdy said, “She says she wouldn’t build a house without them.”

Dave Kern: dave.kern@columbian.com or 360-735-4534.