A garage fire caused by improperly discarded fireplace ashes did $50,000 damage to a home in east Vancouver early Saturday afternoon, according to the Vancouver Fire Department.
The fire at 14107 S.E. 12th St. was reported by neighbors at 2:09 p.m. after they saw smoke coming from the eaves of the house, said firefighter-paramedic Kevin Stromberg.
Fire crews found no one at home when they arrived but saw smoke and fire in the garage, made entry and were able to keep the fire from spreading, Stromberg said.
The fire was brought under control at 2:25 p.m. A total of 13 firefighters were on scene, incuding an engine company from Camas, Stromberg said.
Investigators said the fire originated in hot fireplace ashes that had been placed in a flammable container in the garage. Stronberg said ashes need ample time to cool and should be placed in a nonflammable metal container.
The house is owned by Shirlene Capuchino of Fresno, Calif., according to county property records.