Photo provided by South Whidbey Fire/EMS

Photo provided by South Whidbey Fire/EMS

Man hurt in Clinton fire that consumes residence

A man sustained third degree burns to his leg from a fire that engulfed a Clinton home Sunday.

A man sustained third degree burns to his leg from a fire that engulfed a Clinton home Sunday.

South Whidbey Fire/EMS responded to the Homestead Avenue residence at 12:35 p.m. on June 6.

Twenty-one firefighters helped fight the blaze, which was believed to have originated in the garage while one of the home’s occupants was working on a car, according to Jon Gabelein, a public information officer for the fire district.

The occupant in the garage was the only one harmed in the fire and was transported off-island to receive care. All other residents of the home evacuated safely.

Jim and Arlene Scott, the occupants of the home who are both longtime Whidbey residents, had been living there with their son and daughter.

Arlene Scott said her husband had been working on a motor in one of the vehicles in the garage. He was pouring gasoline into the engine when the fire started near his feet.

“He said there was a whoosh and he tried to stomp it out at first,” Arlene Scott said.

Jim Scott was initially transported to Providence Regional Medical Center in Everett, she said. His injuries, which at first were determined as second-degree burns, were upgraded to third-degree burns and he was transferred to the Regional Burn Center at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

“He’s hopeful that everything will go all right,” Arlene Scott said of her husband. “The nurses said he was a sweet man.”

Firefighters remained on scene for five hours to contain the fire, which resulted in a total loss of the home. The value of the loss due to the fire is approximately $280,000 according to the Island County Assessor’s Office.

The crew extinguished the fire from all four sides of the structure. Gabelein said it was a very dense, widespread fire. Firefighters returned to the scene Monday morning to put out a few “flare-ups” spotted by neighbors.

The roof of the structure caved in, and contents in the basement had extensive water damage.

Several vehicles in the garage, a boat and a cargo trailer were all lost to the blaze. Two cars parked in the driveway of the home received only minor damage, and the garden next to the house survived unscathed.

The Red Cross has reached out to the Scotts about providing aid. Neighbors brought sandwiches to the displaced residents on the day of the fire.

“That was very great to see, neighbors helping neighbors, even if they didn’t know each other,” Gabelein said.

Arlene Scott said she and her family have lived in the Sunlight Beach area of Whidbey for a while. She used to reside in a house down the road that was brought to the island by a barge in the 1950s.

The house that perished was built in 1961 by her father and brother. She and her husband moved into the home in the 2000s.

Arlene Scott said there are plenty of family members around South Whidbey who are currently providing a place for her, her son and daughter to live while figuring out their next steps.

Photo provided by South Whidbey Fire/EMS

Photo provided by South Whidbey Fire/EMS

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