Suspected electrical fire damages Vancouver business

By Emily Gillespie, Columbian Breaking News Reporter



A suspected electrical fire Sunday night caused damage to a cellphone repair business in Vancouver’s Central Park neighborhood.

Firefighters quickly extinguished the small blaze, reported by a passer-by at 10:15 p.m. at Cell Phone Tech Services, 2109 E. Fourth Plain Blvd., according to Vancouver Fire Captain Dan Pearce.

Glass in the business’s storefront reportedly was cracked and blackened by smoke. The business is located in a strip mall.

“A passer-by saw the smoke billowing out of the cracks of the glass,” Pearce said. “They saw smoke coming out of the roof as well.”

The fire, which appeared to be caused by a tripped circuit breaker, was extinguished within 10 minutes of firefighters’ arrival, Pearce said.

During the response, fire crews blocked traffic on East Fourth Plain Boulevard in both directions for about an hour.

Though damage from the fire was contained to an area of extension cords and some electronic devices, heat and smoke burned the business’ drywall and melted light fixtures, Pearce said. Damage to the structure and its contents was estimated at $52,000.

The business was not occupied and no one was injured, Pearce said.

“There was a lot of overloading of extension cords,” said Chris Drone, lead deputy fire marshal. “Inadequate maintenance of extension cords can result in localized resistance heating, shorts or ground faults.”