This is a developing story.
No injuries were reported in a trailer fire at Sprucewood Park in the Mendenhall Valley Wednesday morning, according to Capital City Fire/Rescue Assistant Chief Travis Mead.
“At first it (the call) came in as a possible health issue and actually it was more of just an information concern of some property that’s inside that we’re going to recover for her (the resident) real soon,” Mead said. “So, there was no injured person, I had one firefighter that came out due to some exhaustion issues that I pulled him out of operation but nothing that was really related to fire.”
CCFR responded to the fire in the 9900 block of Stephen Richards Memorial Drive at approximately 8:30 a.m. When crews arrived the trailer was fully engulfed in flames, according to CCFR assistant chief Ed Quinto who said the trailer has been determined a total loss based on the assessment of damage.
The Fire Marshal’s office conducted a fire origin and cause investigation immediately after fire suppression activity. According to CCFR Fire Marshal Dan Jager, the investigation determined that the room of origin was the living room.
“The competent heat source that caused the fire was a wood stove that had been in use,” Jager said in an email. “There was a stack of firewood within 1 foot of the wood stove and a couch within 1 foot of the firewood which allowed the fire to travel rapidly vertically to the ceiling as well as horizontally throughout the room. As other combustible materials ignited the toxic smoke quickly filled the entire home.”
Jager said that a single occupant resided in the home with two dogs, all of whom were able to evacuate safely. The occupant was asleep in the back bedroom and was alerted to the fire by a smoke alarm. When the occupant found the main living room full of heavy smoke, an attempt was made to extinguish the fire but it was too large to be effective.
The occupant had to escape using a side door because the front entrance was blocked by fire, according to Jager. The front door was forced open by a bystander who wanted to make sure everyone was out. With both doors being left open, this allowed for the fire to grow more rapidly by the time personnel arrived, according to Jager. There was no insurance for the home. The occupants were taken care of by friends and family. According to Alaska Red Cross spokesperson Taylar Sausen, while the agency hasn’t yet been contacted by CCFR, the Red Cross is likely to provide assistance to the displaced occupant.
Mead said the fire has been contained to the single trailer and poses no further threat.
“There’s still a lot of hotspots and fire that’s buried in the roof system and floor system, so we’re going to be here a little while to do all of that, but we’ll get through it. Right now, I’d say the fire damage has stopped and now it’s just going to be our overhaul,” Mead said.