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Portland Fire & Rescue Responds to Two Nearly Simultaneous Residential Fires (Photo)
At 5:43 PM, a residential structure fire was reported at 7910 SE Center St.

Initial reports from 9-1-1 callers was that a garbage can next to a home was on fire, and possibly extending to the walls.

The first arriving engine company reported that the garage was fully involved in fire. That crew mounted an aggressive interior attack on the fire to prevent extension to the rest of the house. Additional crews immediately searched the garage and the residence to check for potential victims. Nobody was found. There were no injuries in this fire.

11 minutes later, while the SE Center St. fire incident was still in progress, a second residential structure fire was dispatched at 5:54 PM. This fire was on the other side of the city, at 11027 SW 64th Ave. Crews were assigned to both the interior to investigate and extinguish the fire, which was suspected to be in the attic space, as well as the roof to ventilate fire gasses from inside the structure. A search of the interior was all-clear. No injuries occurred as a result of this incident.

High winds and dry conditions can accelerate a fires growth during suppression efforts. A "wind-driven" Fire was what firefighters encountered tonight in the SE Center St fire. Once a door is opened or a window is burned out, wind can push fire more rapidly through a structure than under normal conditions.

The cause of both fires is still under investigation. Damage estimates, and cause will be posted when the information becomes available.
Posted on Sun, 10 Dec 2017 02:54:09 GMT

Portland Fire & Rescue Responds to NE Lombard St Apartment Fire
At 1:26 this afternoon, Portland Fire responded to a report of an apartment fire at 166 NE Lombard St.

First arriving units reported a large column of smoke, which indicated a working structure fire. Bystanders outside the fire, reported that the fire originated in the basement on the back side of the complex. The crew assigned to fire attack made an aggressive push through the rear of the structure and quickly knocked the fire down. Additional crews performed vital ventilation and search and rescue functions.

A cursory search yielded no victims inside. No occupants or firefighters were injured in this fire. One house cat perished in this fire.

Fire investigators are on scene working to determine the cause of the fire. Updates on fire cause and damage estimates will be posted once they become available.

Portland Fire would like to remind everyone that that driving over charged hoselines that are crossing roads is not only dangerous for motorists, but can endanger firefighters who are relying on the water supply from hydrants for suppression and protection from fire. Avoid driving over fire hose unless an emergency requires it.
Posted on Sat, 09 Dec 2017 23:54:23 GMT

Portland Fire Crews Battle Two-Alarm High-Rise Apartment Fire
At 10:31 this morning Portland Fire Crews were dispatched to a report of an apartment fire at Park Plaza Apartments. The eleven story, 149 unit apartment building, is located at 1969 SW Park Ave. On arrival, crews made their way to the top floor where they found heavy smoke in one apartment unit and fire in the bedroom of that unit. At 10:42 the Incident Commander called for a second alarm to bring additional resources. One occupant of the affected unit sustained injuries related to the fire and was transported by ambulance to the hospital. Once the fire was located, crews were able to quickly extinguish it, keeping it confined to the room of origin. Investigators then worked to determine that the cause of fire was improperly discarded smoking materials. Finally, firefighters worked to remove all charred material from the damaged apartment, smoke from the 11th floor hallways, and confirm that the fire would not rekindle. Approximately 50 occupants of the building, who were home at the time of the fire, were temporarily displaced while fire crews worked to make the building safe for them to go back inside. The two occupants of the apartment where the fire occurred will require alternate housing while the damaged unit is restored.

Portland Fire and Rescue reminds all citizens to properly discard smoking material in a non-combustible (glass or metal) ashtray or container, and to not allow old smoking material to build up in this container.

Elevated fires in high-rise buildings are especially challenging for firefighters. They must carry all of their equipment aloft by stairwell until they can determine if the elevators have been compromised by the fire or are safe to operate for shuttling equipment. Because these fire are so labor intensive, in the City of Portland, a first alarm high-rise fire response consists of seven engines, three ladder trucks, a heavy squad, and three chiefs. The second alarm assignment is four additional engines, two additional trucks, and another heavy squad. They also receive two additional chiefs, and a rehab unit to support the efforts of the incident commander and fire crews.

Communications can also be difficult in these large buildings and often times the firefighter's radios will not transmit through the heavy concrete walls. Portland has a very robust emergency communications system with excellent radios and transmission capabilities, but even the most robust system can be challenged by heavy masonry construction. When this happens, firefighters must switch their radios to "simplex" mode which "boosts" the signal but reduces the coverage area, meaning only the radios on the incident scene will be able to transmit and receive messages from that incident scene. This makes it more difficult for chief officers and the dispatch center to monitor the firefighters progress from outside locations. To overcome this, the fire code now requires newly constructed high-rise buildings to install equipment that boosts emergency radio signals inside the building, improving emergency communications.
Posted on Thu, 07 Dec 2017 23:45:10 GMT

Oregon Once Again Sending Fire Crews to Assist California with Wildfires
The state of California has once again issued a request for firefighting resources to assist with firefighting efforts in California. Oregon will be answering their request by sending resources from throughout the state. Multnomah County is sending a strike team of type-one engines to assist. The five engines for the strike team will consist of two Gresham Fire engines and three Portland Fire engines, and a Chief Officer. The team has assembled, collected the wildfire deployment equipment that had been stowed after their return from the North Bay fire barely six weeks ago, and are headed south to meet up with other resources from our state.

While this second request in a single fire season for inter-state mutual aid from California is truly unprecedented, Oregon is fortunate to have the resources available. 2017 will go down as a record year for Oregon fire crews.

Updates and photos from the Multnomah County strike team will be provided as they become available.

For more information on statewide resources being sent please contact the Oregon State Fire Marshal's Office PIO at 503-370-0033 (media pager)
Posted on Wed, 06 Dec 2017 05:02:28 GMT

Portland Fire & Rescue Responds To Thanksgiving Commercial Fire at 510 NW 3rd Ave
Portland Fire responded to a commercial fire at 510 NW 3rd Ave. First arriving crews reported fire at the rear of the structure from both the first and second floors.

This location was vacant, and had previously been the location of a 2-Alarm fire on August 11 of this year. A cursory search revealed no occupants, but the incident commander withdrew firefighters and ordered an exterior offensive attack due to concerns about the structural integrity being compromised from the previous fire.

The fire cause is still under investigation. This press release will be updated when the investigation concludes.
Posted on Fri, 24 Nov 2017 07:52:29 GMT

Portland Fire & Rescue to Reopen Station 23 with Existing Resources (Photo)
To respond to Lower Southeast Portland's increase in population and businesses, Portland Fire & Rescue will reopen Station 23, located at 2915 SE 13th Place, on November 16th. Station 23 will operate using a pre-existing two-person crew and rescue vehicle. The Type 2 rescue vehicle is primarily designed to provide emergency medical services The vehicle and two-person crew is being transferred from Station 19 (7301 East Burnside), which will continue to respond with a four-person crew and its assigned engine.

"Portland Fire & Rescue responds to incidents from tactically located stations across the city. As Chief, I must constantly reevaluate our approach, especially when it comes to our goal of zero fire deaths a year. Based on its increased density, Southeast Portland requires the sort of response Station 23 can offer," says Portland Fire & Rescue Chief Mike Myers. "I am pleased that we are able to provide this important coverage by using existing resources and a strategic re-mapping of our assets."

Station 23 was closed in July 2010 due to budget cuts. However, in the last year 1,333 incidents have occurred in Station 23's zone (called a Fire Management Area), including 105 confirmed fires, 16 of which were structure fires.

"Reopening Station 23 with existing resources is a great example of the innovation and efficiency Portland Fire & Rescue is using to better serve Portlanders," says Commissioner Dan Saltzman. "This two-person rescue will support surrounding stations during peak hours and decrease response times in order to provide a higher level of service for our communities."
Posted on Wed, 15 Nov 2017 23:06:06 GMT


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