ABERDEEN, Wash. - Fire crews monitored a home for flare-ups well into the morning hours after a garage fire spread to an Aberdeen home last night. Mayor Bill Simpson was just leaving the council meeting around 9 "As I left city hall, I saw the smoke and I thought 'that's kind of close to Margo's house'." Councilwoman Margo Short lives right next door to the home at the corner of 8th and Broadway "The flames were [visible from] behind, our house sticks up high and it was a very scary feeling."
Engines from Hoquiam and Cosmopolis assisted in front of around 100 concerned neighbors that had gathered last night, Fire Chief Dave Carlberg said from the scene "The garage was totally involved when we got here, it was already getting into the house. We have crews working on the inside, we're trying to be very careful because we have substantial damage to the structure. We want to be monitoring things to make sure we don't have a collapse.
Flames from the garage were 30’ high on arrival. The alarm was escalated to a 2nd alarm immediately with units from both Hoquiam and Cosmopolis responding. A total of 6 Engines, 1 Ladder and 7 other support units staffed by a total of 30 personnel were at the scene. There were no injuries to any occupants; however two AFD firefighters received minor injuries. The initial fire operation was a defensive strategy and focused on protecting the surrounding homes and structures in the area. The fire was brought under control at 22:11 hours.
The home is owned by the Druzianich Family. Mrs. Durzianich was home at the time of the fire along with a caregiver who assisted her to safety after discovering the house was on fire. The house was constructed in 1953 by the Morrison Logging family and was built entirely of cedar with much the lumber being milled on site according to the Druzianich Family members who arrived later in the incident from Seattle.
The fire is believed to have originated in the garage area. Three cars were also destroyed. Damage is estimated at $488,476 ($325, 651 structure, $162,825 contents). There was also $7,000 in damage to 713 N. Broadway due to radiant heat that scorched the side of that house. Investigators with the AFD are still in the process of investigating the cause of the fire.