August 3—Seattle Fire investigators determined a fire that started in a three-story motel along Airport Way South was accidental. The fire, which heavily damaged two units, was electrical in nature according to the investigators. The fire caused 400 thousand dollars in damage including 300 thousand dollars in damage to the structure and 100 thousand dollars in damage to the contents.
At 7:24 this morning a caller to 911 reported smoke pouring from a second floor unit of the motel located in the 4000 block of Airport Way South. Firefighters from Engine 13 were the first to arrive and found flames and heavy black smoke pouring from a second floor unit. Once inside the building, the firefighters found an unresponsive man in his 50’s in a second floor hallway. Several residents were attempting to carry the man downstairs. Firefighters pulled him from the building and began CPR. Within four chest compressions, the man began breathing. He suffered smoke inhalation and was transported by medics to Harborview Medical Center with life threatening injuries.
Another patient with pre-existing medical conditions was transported by AMR ambulance to Harborview in serious conditions. Medics examined and treated three other patients who declined to be transported to the hospital for further medical care. Hours later, another male resident was transported to a local hospital after complaining of a knee injury suffered while leaving the building.
Firefighters were able to contain the fire to just two units. The building had sprinklers in the hallways which kept the flames from spreading to other units. The owner of the building says there were 43 residents in the 40 motel units when the fire broke out.
The American Red Cross is on scene and set up a temporary shelter at Blaine Memorial United Methodist Church for 15 of the displaced residents.
The fire department advised the residents to stay out of the structure until the fire sprinkler system is fixed and the smoke damage can be mitigated.