Garbage goes up in flames

Waste inside a City of Oak Harbor garbage truck caught fire early Tuesday morning on Dock Street just south of S.E. 8th Ave.

As a precaution, police evacuated the Der Kinderhuis child care center as firefighters climbed into the truck to extinguish the flames and smoke.

At about 8:50 a.m., the driver of the truck had pulled into an apartment complex to pick up a last load of garbage when he noticed smoke coming from the rear compartment. Firefighters were quickly summoned and arrived just after bystanders heard a “pop,” then a brief explosion of flames which quickly dissolved into thick, white smoke.

Oak Harbor Fire Chief Mark Soptich said the fire was likely caused by someone dumping hot material into their trash.

Soptich said firefighters would extinguish the fire as completely as possible before driving the truck to the dump in Coupeville, where a fire tender would stand by as the garbage was unloaded.

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