ELMA, Wash. - Fire District 5 knocked down a kitchen fire yesterday morning that Fire Chief Dan Prater tells us could have been far worse had first responders not acted quickly and tore into the small "attic space" of a mobile home in the 100 block of Hokanson road in Elma. No one was home at the time of the incident. Prater tells us a neighbor reported smoke coming from the home just after 9 yesterday, then kicked in the front door to make sure the home was empty. Fire was contained to the kitchen and dining room with smoke damage throughout the home. Estimated property loss was set as $20,000 for content and a complete loss on the home itself.
Prater said the initial investigation shows that the fire started in the corner of the kitchen, where a new toaster oven had been used earlier that morning prior to everyone leaving for the day.
I would like to say that the aggressive firefighting skills along with the good team work provided by the responders on the scene is the reason we were able to stop this fire in its tracts. In 20 years I have seen fires like this not stopped and watch people’s property and irreplaceable items get lost, not today. Good job to all but a special good job to FF/Medic Huntley and FF/Medic Mathis as the first in crew on doing an outstanding job knocking this down; both with District 5. The incident Commander for the fire was Captain Mike Litzinger with District 5 for his accountability skills on the scene. - Dan Prater Fire Chief, Grays Harbor Fire District #5
Grays Harbor Fire District #5 along with automatic mutual aid being received from Elma Fire was dispatched at 09:15 to 171 Hokanson Rd., Elma for a structure fire with smoke showing from windows being reported by a neighbor. District 5 received mutual aid from Grays Harbor Fire District #2 Brady Station along with Grays Harbor Fire District #1 – Oakville stood by if needed.
District 5 responded with 2 Chief officers, 3 Firefighter/Paramedic, 2 Firefighter/EMTs and 1 support staff on 1 Command Vehicle, 2 Engines, 1 Tender, and 2 Ambulances. Elma responded with 1 Chief Officer and 1 probationary firefighter on 1 engine, District 2 responded with a Chief Officer and a Captain on a Tender for a total of 12 responders.
Upon arrival at 09:28 the first in coming unit advised we had light smoke showing from the eaves. Elma Fire’s engine was used as the attack engine with District 5 and District 2 tenders providing water supply. While the Incident Commander was doing a 360 walk around fire vented from the C/D corner area where most of the smoke was coming from. An aggressive offensive attack was conducted with a very quick knock down done by the interior team. The ceiling of the kitchen and dining room was pulled down in order for the crew to get the main fire which was located in the very small “attic space”. Fire was contained to the kitchen and dining room with smoke damage throughout the home. No one was home at the time of the incident. A neighbor had seen the smoke coming from the structure and called it in but then went to the house and kicked the front door in to make sure no one was home. He grabbed a garden hose and tried to do what he could from the door.
Initial investigation shows that the fire started in the corner of the kitchen, where a new toaster oven had been used earlier that morning prior to everyone leaving for the day. Nothing was found to be suspicious in nature and the property was turned over the owner and insurance company. All units cleared at 10:52.