LONGVIEW, WA (KPTV) – Sixteen people were displaced from their homes late Sunday night after a fire ignited at an apartment building in Longview.
According to Longview Police & Fire, crews responded to a reported fire at 3858 Pennsylvania Street just before 11:30 p.m. Dispatch told crews that the person who reported the fire said it was possibly started by a candle. At the scene, firefighters found a “parking lot full of chaos, which included the occupants from the fire unit, occupants for adjacent units, and bystanders from the other multiple apartments in the Fairway Apartment complex.”
Smoke was seen coming from the second story of the apartment building as well as flames showing out the back window and spreading into the soffit and roofline of the involved unit. Crews worked quickly to fight the fire at the primary apartment, which was “chocked full of superheated smoke that was nearing flashover as crews knocked down the fire and prevented the spread to adjacent units.”
The fire was brought under control in about 20 minutes and all eight units of the apartment building were checked for damage and victims. Longview Police & Fire said no one was injured in the fire and the two cats in the apartment adjacent to the involved unit were not hurt.
The involved unit was destroyed by the fire while another unit was heavily damaged by heat and smoke, and two lower units suffered mild smoke and water damage. In total, 16 people were displaced by the fire. The Red Cross is assisting those affected with temporary housing and other needs.
The cause of the fire is under investigation. Firefighters are investigating the report that a candle started the fire but are not ruling out other possibilities. In the fire response, 22 firefighters from Longview and Cowlitz 2 Fire and Rescue responded to assist.