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News Releases
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AM Fire in Lents Neighborhood (Photo) - 11/26/22

Morning Fire in SE Portland

Portland Fire & Rescue was dispatched to a fire in deep SE Portland in the Lents Neighborhood at 7:16 AM today. The first arriving engine found a home with the front porch completely engulfed in flames that was extending to the nearby fence. The crew of this fire engine was able to connect to a nearby hydrant and begin an offensive fire attack to extinguish the fire. The second arriving engine found the electrical drop line to the home had been compromised and burned through. This severed power line on the ground posed a bit of a threat to the working crews so emergency tones were sounded and the officer the second fire engine remained near the downed power line to ensure no one in active firefighting duties stepped on the line and injured themselves.

The first arriving truck was sent to the roof to perform vertical ventilation if needed. As they climbed the ladders and positioned themselves on the roof of the home, they reported that the fire had self-vented through the roof. The fire had moved into the soffit above the porch and burned through the roof above the porch but was contained to this attic space and extinguished from the crews on the ground working. An engine company on the ground put ladders up on multiple sides of the home to make sure the roof crews had options of escape had the fire grown in nature and cut them off from their original ladder.

The second arriving truck performed a walkaround the house to aid the command chief in any exposure concerns and then performed a primary and secondary search of the first and second floors of the home. There were no occupants inside the structure and no fire had entered the interior of the home. The basement access was from an exterior door and the first arriving truck forced the door to find the basement space clear of both fire and occupants.

A responsible party arrived and indicated that a tenant of the building may have returned to the structure before the first arriving fire engine arrived and was unaccounted for. This prompted the commanding chief to request the search and rescue group to reenter the home and perform a thorough third search. After this third search of the building there was no one found on the inside and all occupants were out of the home.

The commanding officer was focused on making sure crews remained together and had a crew on the outside of the structure ready to relieve anyone who was becoming low on the available air in the bottle. At one point near the 25-minute mark the commanding officer directed the first crew to stop their tasks and exit the firefighting areas to be replaced by a fresh crew standing by who had a full complement of air available in their bottles to extend a safe working time for all crews on scene.

The power company arrived and was able to tape off the power line where it had been severed but was unable to cut off the power to the line until a few of the hose lines on the ground were moved to allow for the articulating bucket truck could be maneuvered close enough to the location of the elevated line. This moving of the hose lines and positioning the vehicle took mere minutes and shortly the power to the downed line had been cut off and all crews were safe to move in and around this powerline. 

This fire has been completely extinguished and crews are now cleaning up and obtaining new fresh air bottles from the chief’s rigs on scene to get back into service. An investigator has been requested and will work on a cause of the fire after their arrival.

Portland Fire & Rescue would like to thank the power company for their prompt callback to the scene and eliminating the power to the dropped line aiding in the safe extinguishment of the fire.

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Portland Fire & Rescue battle Thanksgiving Night Fire (Photo) - 11/25/22

Portland Fire & Rescue battle fire in U-HAUL parking lot

At 1:47 AM, PF&R was called out to a “large fire” in the parking lot of a U-HAUL truck rental location on the corner of SE 48th and Powell. The first arriving engine took command and noted that there were 3-4 box trucks in the center of the parking lot fully engulfed in flames and directed the crews begin stretching hose lines and offensively attack the fire and prevent the spread to adjacent trucks and then outbuildings associated with the property.

The next arriving officer was able to investigate by walking within the parking lot to see that the tight parking of all the box trucks on site was going to make firefighting activities difficult. The physical spaces between the trucks were so small a firefighter with their air bottle on would not be able to walk between the trucks to get to the fire burning in the middle of the lot. The decision was made to position a truck on the northern flank to use as an arial attack to prevent the spread of fire throughout the parking lot and into the neighboring structures. The parking lot was filled with various sizes of rental trucks parked 14” apart with the tailboard of one truck nearly touching the front bumper of the truck behind to help paint a picture of how tight spaces were making moving bodies and hoses quite difficult.

As the first arriving fire truck was repositioning, the arriving chief took command and asked for a second alarm assignment to provide enough firefighters on scene to prevent the fire spread if the use of the arial water stream was not able to contain the fire and prevent the exposures from becoming in danger. Crews on the ground continued to focus stretching multiple hose lines off the pumping engine to get water onto the fire and protect the exposures “from all flanks”.

The fire truck was in place and arial ladder set up with the required pumping engine attached to a fire hydrant having dry hose lines connected between the rigs. The truck officer radioed to the command post that they were ready to flow water but the crews working within the box trucks would need to withdraw so they could safely flow water from above. Radio reports from the ground crews indicated that they had been able to control the fire without the use of the arial ladder pipe and all the exposures, including the neighboring U-HAUL trucks, were safely protected and much of the fire had been extinguished.

The command officer released all second alarm companies except the Rehab Rig to provide air, drinking water, and nourishment to the crews working on scene. Minutes later the fire was completely under control and the crews began to break down the number of resources needed to finish extinguishment of the fire. U-HAUL personnel from the location were on site to aid in moving the trucks not affected by fire to allow for easier mobility in and around the box trucks on fire which required fewer companies on scene to finish up the firefighting process.

PF&R would like to thank our partners at PPB for providing traffic control on either side of the scene as well as the responding staff of the U-HAUL commercial business that helped us put a stop to the fire.

This fire is currently under investigation and there were no reported injuries.

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Thanksgiving Safety Tips and a Guide to a Safe Holiday Weekend (Photo) - 11/20/22

It’s that time of year again and Portland Fire & Rescue wants to help guide you to a safe and happy Thanksgiving Holiday with some safety tips and reminders as friends and families gather to share time, laughter, and food. Traditional meals may vary throughout our city, but the dangers of home accidents and fires is ever present, regardless of the meal being served.

 

Thanksgiving fire facts

  • Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires with more than three times the daily average for such incidents. Christmas Day and Christmas Eve ranked second and third, with both having nearly twice the daily average. 
  • Unattended cooking was by far the leading contributing factor in cooking fires and fire deaths.
  • Cooking causes 49% of all reported home fires and 42% of home fire injuries, and it is the second leading cause of home fire deaths.

 

Below are safety tips shared from the National Fire Protection Agency

  • Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stove top so you can keep an eye on the food.
  • Stay in the home when cooking your turkey and check on it frequently.
  • Avoid clothing that drapes off of your arms and torso while working at the stove to reduce the chance of accidental ignition.
  • Keep children away from the stove. The stove will be hot, and kids should stay three feet away.
  • Make sure kids stay away from hot food and liquids. The steam or splash from vegetables, gravy or coffee could cause serious burns.
  • Keep knives out of the reach of children.
  • Be sure electric cords from an electric knife, coffee maker, plate warmer or mixer are not dangling off the counter within easy reach of a child.
  • Keep matches and utility lighters out of the reach of children — up high in a locked cabinet.
  • Never leave children alone in room with a lit candle.
  • Keep the floor clear so you don’t trip over kids, toys, pocketbooks, or bags.
  • Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button.

 

Turkey Frying Safety Tips

Please take the proper safety steps if you are longing for the perfectly cooked turkey and are entertaining frying your bird this year. Below are some safety tips to help guide you to enjoying your turkey and avoiding a “business call” from PF&R (or the responding agency at your home).

  • Find the right place. The first step in deep frying a turkey is finding a safe, outdoor spot. Set up at least 10 feet away from any structures like your home, neighbor’s home, or garage. Place equipment on a flat, stable surface to reduce the risk of oil spills or fires.
  • Wear protective gear. Even when you do everything right, oil can find its way onto you. Cover yourself with thick clothing, an apron, and oven mitts. Put safety goggles on when you’re putting in the turkey to go the extra mile. Oil burns aren’t fun, so this can be a big help to prevent them.
  • Make it an adult-only zone. Holidays can mean chaos with kids, extra guests, and pets running around. Set clear rules for everyone at the party to look out for kids and keep them away from danger zones. To be extra safe, limit the deep fryer assistance to those wearing the right kind of clothing.
  • Use a thawed and dry turkey. Water and oil never mix well. When they do, oil can bubble furiously and lead to spillage. Make sure your turkey is thawed out and completely dry before you start frying.  
  • Be prepared. Oil fires are some of the most difficult to put out. Before you start heating the oil, place a fire extinguisher within arm’s reach. If a fire does start call 911 and safely use your extinguisher. Fires are unpredictable and hard to control, so if it starts to get bigger, let professionals help.
  • Finish on a strong note. After you fry your turkey, keep the cleanup just as safe. Let the oil completely cool before you attempt to clean up the deep fryer. Then, properly store and dispose of it safely.

 

Portland Fire & Rescue is wishing you a safe and happy holiday weekend!

 

Please see the link below for a demonstration of how to properly (and improperly) fry a turkey:

 

 

 

Fire Damage Interior and Investigators Working
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Fire Crews Battle Second Alarm Fire In NE Portland (4500 Block of NE 95th) (Photo) - 11/18/22

Last night at 11:18 PM Portland Firefighters were called to a duplex on the 4500 block of NE 95th Ave. As they arrived fire crews noted heavy fire burning on one side of the structure and coming very close to a next-door building. The initial focus was on searching for trapped people and stopping the spread of the fire. This was difficult due to the amount of fire and close proximity of the other building. These factors prompted fire commanders to call for a second alarm.

Firefighters confirmed that no one was trapped or injured and the fire was brought under control quickly. The resident of the fire apartment wasn't home and no injuries were reported. As of 9:00 AM today (11/18/2022) this fire investigation is ongoing and the cause hasn't been determined.

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Fatal Fire at Former Hotel (Photo) - 11/15/22

Fatal Fire at Former Hotel

Portland Fire & Rescue were called out to a fire at the former Rodeway Inn at the corner of NE Sandy and NE Lombard. PF&R was dispatched to a possible fire at 0452 this morning. The first arriving engine took command of the scene and confirmed smoke and flames present in one of the apartments living spaces on the street level and directed his team to perform an offensive fire attack, taking the hose interior to extinguish the flames. The driver of the first arriving engine did a search of the adjacent rooms and confirmed they were all clear. 

The next arriving engine was assigned water supply and it was discovered the closest fire hydrant available was a few blocks away. This completely emptied the beds of all hose to connect to the fire hydrant and get the water that was potentially needed in future fire extinguishment actions. The third arriving engine was assigned search and rescue of the building focusing on the second level as the adjacent rooms had already been checked.

Firefighting crews quickly extinguished the fire within minutes of receiving the call from the emergency dispatach center. In the process of their firefighting tasks, the interior firefighting crew found a body in the room and removed the individual who was later confirmed as a fatality at the scene. 

The building was a concrete structure with a brick façade that kept all fire contained to the room of origin with no other rooms affected by the fire. No one will be displaced. This is a former hotel that is operated by DO GOOD Multnomah, a service provider for the joint offices of homeless services of Multnomah County and the City of Portland.

The cause of the fire is currently being evaluated by PF&R Investigations Unit with the initial assessment indicating no criminal intent believed. The process of notifying next of kin of the fire victim is ongoing.

 

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PF&R Battles Early AM Partially Constructed Multistory Apartment Building (Photo) - 11/15/22

SE 148 Fire -Multi Story Building Under Construction– Morning of 11-15-22

Portland Fire & Rescue responded to a reported apartment fire at 12:18 AM today in the Glenfair Neighborhood near the border of Portland and Gresham. The first arriving officer reported there was a multistory apartment complex under construction completely on fire. He also communicated there were many impending fire issues on all surrounding sides with other exposure buildings under construction. This property was a large apartment complex with up to nine large 3-story buildings under construction presenting many exposure issues.

The commanding chief directed the next two arriving engines to attach to different fire hydrants and create exposure hose lines between the structure on fire and neighboring buildings as the first arriving engine put a larger diameter attack hose line into service. This places multiple engines and fire hydrants to obtain enough water to control the scene, a tactic that does not happen often, but this fire required big streams of water to cool and extinguish the fire.

The next pair of exposure lines were put in operation with the fire structure still showing quite a bit of fire. With the potential need for additional resources just minutes into the fire, the incident commander called for a second alarm assignment. The conditions changed and the firefighters on scene began to gain control of the fire. The crews extinguished much of the fire on the original structure and the exposure buildings now well protected with multiple fire hose lines flowing large amount of water. Command released the second alarm companies with the fire conditions under control and knowledge another fire had just been reported slightly to the west in Portland.

The command officer indicated that the fire was under control in less than 10 minutes from arrival. With many companies needed to methodically evaluate all the surrounding structures for safe conditions and the large amounts of hose on the ground, the entire first alarm assignment remained on scene for up to 30 minutes to safely address the remaining fire and pick up the hoses that were used.

PF&R Fire Investigations Unit is on scene to try and determine a cause. No reported injuries. No evacuations of buildings and with the nature of the fire building being under construction, there wasn’t anyone displaced by this fire. Portland Fire& Rescue would like to thank our partners in east county, Gresham Fire and Emergency Services that helped us extinguish the fire. (Photo Credit – Greg Muhr -911photog)

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Portland Fire fights fire in a NE PDX home (Photo) - 11/10/22

PF&R Crews in NE PDX battle early evening house fire

Portland Fire & Rescue was dispatched to a residential fire in NE Portland at 6:09 PM with reports of a fire in the back of a house near the intersection of Emerson and NE Cully Blvd. The first arriving engine communicated to all other crews there was a good amount of grey smoke pushing out of the home under pressure at the eave line. The first crew was directed to make entry on the backside of the home and begin and offensive fire attack by entering the structure and extinguishing the fire.

Reports were made by the first crew that there was a glow of fire in a window on the back of the house and that they were forcing entry at the back door of the home. The second arriving engine established a water supply at the fire hydrant and connected their hose to the pumping engine. 

Radio traffic from crews indicated excessive clutter which was making progress difficult inside the home. The first arriving chief took command and quickly noted a visible change in the smoke conditions indicating the fire was successfully being extinguished with the use of multiple hose lines. 

There was a concern that the fire had moved into the attic space, so command directed crews to pull ceiling from the inside of the home along with using saws to open access holes in the roof. This allowed the firefighters to get any water needed on the small bit of active fire in the attic.

Just after the 10-minute timer alert was given to the crews the fire was extinguished. The crews on scene began to pick up the hose on the ground and get back into service to be free and available for the next emergency call. The first arriving engine and truck are remaining on scene to meticulously remove the contents of the home to make certain the items do not rekindle later and force crews to return to this address for another fire at the same address.

The cause of the fire is currently under investigation. There were no reported injuries. PF&R is not certain how many people may be displaced at this time.

 

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Crews working on the roof
Portland Fire & Rescue member falls through floor in AM residential fire (Photo) - 11/09/22

Portland Fire & Rescue calls Mayday in AM residential fire

Portland Fire was dispatched to a possible residential fire just before 8:30 AM in the Concordia Neighborhood within Alberta Arts District of NE Portland. The first arriving engine confirmed there was smoke showing upon arrival and took an offensive fire attack stretching hose lines to the front door and forcing entry to locate and extinguish the fire. 

Smoke was banked down to nearly the floor on the main level of the home but there was not a heavy presence of heat as reported by the first to enter the structure. As the first crew was making entry other arriving fire companies were being assigned tasks by the incident commander on scene to perform necessary search along with other essential tasks to paint a clear picture to the officer directing the scene and to inform the working crews of anything unusual or unsafe that could pose a problem in firefighting activities. 

The floor gave way and a firefighter fell into the basement just inside the front door as the initial attack team was making progress to find the fire. This firefighter followed department protocol and communicated a “mayday” transmission on the radio, successfully identified himself, what had occurred, and his location. The firefghter said that after he took a step forward “the floor that was there, just wasn't there anymore” and he ended up in the basement. 

The crew assigned as our Rapid Intervention Team (RIT) was performing a walkaround the structure when the mayday radio transmission occurred, and they were directed to make entry and locate to extract the firefighter that had fallen through the floor. This crew forced entry into the back of the house, found the stairs to the basement and descended in thick brown smoke to find the downed member. They found the firefighter unhurt and led the member out the way they had entered up the stairs and into the backyard of the residence.

The fire was extinguished shortly after the RIT team had reported that the downed firefighter was out of the structure safely. A firefighter was transported to the hospital because of a different fall for a laceration on their head. Steps have been taken to contact the Red Cross to assist the resident who was not at home to provide living assistance as the home is untenable. Portland Fire & Rescue Investigations Unit is on scene to determine a cause.

 

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PF&R responds to residential fire in North Tabor Neighborhood (Photo) - 11/08/22

Portland Fire & Rescue fights early morning fire in the North Tabor Neighborhood

PF&R fire crews were dispatched to a fire shortly after 4 AM. The first arriving crews said that light smoke was showing at the eave line and possibly the windows on the first floor were darkened with smoke. This crew began pulling hose off their engine to assume an offensive fire attack tactic to make entry and extinguish the fire. The next arriving crew attached to a nearby fire hydrant and established a successful water supply.

Indications from the interior fire attack crew was they found fire in the front corner of the home that they had extinguished and there did not appear to be any extension into the upper story of the home. This lack of fire extending upward was confirmed by the crew upstairs performing a search to make certain all residents were outside safely. There was a bit of lazy smoke inside the structure, so a thorough inspection of the home was completed to ensure that the fire was kept to the room of origin and had not penetrated the walls and moved up into the upper levels of the residence. The ability to remove the smoke in a horizontal manner by opening windows was successful and there was not a need to cut holes in the roof keeping the top cover of the home intact as we enter a rainy period of the year.

During the secondary search of the main floor following the extinguishment of the fire it was reported that there was a hole in the floor on the first level in the corner of fire origin which was large enough for a firefighter to unknowingly fall through. Emergency tones across the radio were sounded and the report of the floor burn through was communicated to all crews working on the incident and a fire officer remained at the location of the burn through hole to prevent anyone from injury until proper caution tape could be put in place. The fire was determined completely extinguished at this time and half the responding companies were released to get back into service.

This resident of the home was not inside upon the arrival but was at the scene of the incident. It is unclear if this individual was inside the home at the time of fire discovery or was away. This individual is uninjured may be displaced while repairs are performed on the home. The cause of the fire was electrical in nature. No reported injuries to residents or working firefighters.

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