Firefighters work on a garage fire Saturday night on North Whidbey. Photo provided by North Whidbey Fire and Rescue

Firefighters work on a garage fire Saturday night on North Whidbey. Photo provided by North Whidbey Fire and Rescue

Improperly stored ashes spark blaze in garage

Wood stove ashes in a cardboard box led to a large garage fire Saturday night on North Whidbey.

The two occupants and a dog got out of the house safely, according to North Whidbey Fire and Rescue Battalion Chief Chris Swiger. Fire crews from the North Whidbey and Naval Air Station Whidbey Island arrived at about 9:40 p.m. to find the garage fully engulfed in flames, smoke throughout the house and two of the neighboring home’s windows broken from the heat.

The homeowner had cleaned out her wood stove and stored the ashes in a box stacked atop other boxes in the garage, Swiger said. The ashes likely still had hot embers that ignited.

Flames didn’t extend into the home, but there was “significant” smoke damage, Swiger said.

North Whidbey Fire responded with two engines, two brush engines and one water tender as well as aid units and two command vehicles. The air station’s fire department assisted with one water tender and a commanding officer, according to a press release. Firefighters extinguished the blaze within about five minutes and had everything under control in about half an hour, Swiger said.

The neighboring home, which was located about six feet away, also sustained smoke damage. Red Cross responded to assist the homeowner and the residents next door.

Swiger recommends disposing of wood stove or fireplace ashes in a metal container and stored outside away from structures.

More in News

Chris Stack and Samantha Soule film a scene of their movie, "Midday Black, Midnight Blue," on the Coupeville wharf June 14. (Photo by Karina Andrew/Whidbey News-Times)
Indie crew films movie on Whidbey

Island becomes backup after Michigan locale falls through.

More federal relief money than expected headed to Whidbey

Whidbey Island will soon receive millions of dollars of American Rescue Plan funding.

Oak Harbor Public School photo - group
Oak Harbor top 10 reveal their plans post-high school

Oak Harbor High School seniors graduate on June 19.

Clockwise from top left: Drake Borden, Mollie Bailey, Marissa Malinowski, Owen Barenburg, Catherine Lhamon. (Photos provided)
Coupeville High School recognizes top five graduates

Coupeville High School’s top five seniors didn’t let a difficult pandemic year hold them back.

Photo courtesy America's Boating Club of Deception Pass
Inquiring minds hoping to nab that crab will have two opportunities to learn the tips and tricks of the trade this month before the recreational season opens July 1.
Boating Club holding free seminar on crabbing

Crabbers have two chances this month to learn tips and tricks before the season opens on July 1.

map
WhidbeyHealth lists vacant property for $727,500

WhidbeyHealth has listed a 4.56 acre vacant property for sale on the real estate website Zillow.

Annie Philp, center, leads student counter-protesters. (Photo by Karina Andrew/Whidbey News-Times)
Students counter a protest against social justice education

Hundreds of demonstrators lined the street in front of South Whidbey High School Friday afternoon.

A banner celebrating the South Whidbey High School class of 2021 was vandalized, and the Black Lives Matter banner next to it was stolen. (Photo provided by Josephine Moccia)
Black Lives Matter sign stolen from in front of school

A banner celebrating 2021 graduates was also left vandalized.

Port gets $100K grant to improve broadband

Island County commissioners voted last week to approve Port of Coupeville’s application for funding.

Most Read