A fire ripped through a two-story Salmon Creek house Friday morning, killing three dogs and two cats.
No people were in the house, 508 N.E 127th St., when the fire was reported at 8:36 a.m., said David Schmitke, spokesman for Clark County Fire District 6.
When firefighters arrived, they saw heavy smoke and flames shooting out from the back of the house’s west end.
Ashley Mitchum, an off-duty firefighter who lives nearby, called in the fire and shot video of the smokes and flames as the first engine arrived on the scene.
Ten engines and other equipment from District 6 and Vancouver Fire Department responded to the fire, which was brought under control at 9:14 a.m., Schmitke said.
The home, which Clark County records indicate was built in 1977, was filled with smoke as firefighters wearing breathing apparatus started searching inside the structure.
“You couldn’t see two feet in front of your face,” Schmitke said.
Firefighters eventually opened up a portion of the roof to ventilate the smoke. Schmitke said firefighters need to be careful because that can cause any remaining flames to race through the structure to the opening.
“You need to make sure you have the personnel to move on that quickly,” he said.
No injuries to firefighters were reported. By 9:30 a.m., firefighters were checking the structure for hot spots. The Clark County Fire Marshal’s Office was beginning its investigation to determine the fire’s cause.
Schmitke said he could see a plume of smoke rising on a clear morning with little, if any, wind as he left District 6’s headquarters station, 8800 N.E. Hazel Dell Ave.
“It’s really unusual to have such an active fire,” he said. “This one was really going by the time we got here.”
Two adults and one child lived in the house.
“Red Cross has been called,” Schmitke said. “We don’t know if they are going to need to utilize their resources.”
A GoFundMe account has been established to help the family.