July 2—A two-alarm fire at two Beacon Hill homes is still under investigation.
On Wednesday July 1 at 9 p.m., multiple 911 calls poured into the Fire Alarm Center reporting a loud explosion and fire at a home locate in the 3500 block of S Portland Street.
While responding, Engine Company 33 saw a large column of black smoke rising from the fire scene. The firefighters arrived to find flames shooting from a two-story home. Flames extended from the home of origin to the nearby trees and then to a home to the west. Firefighters called for a two-alarm fire doubling the resources to help battle two homes on fire.
Two adult males safely evacuated the home of origin. One occupant attempted to extinguish the fire with a garden hose but the fire was too intense. Firefighters conducted a search and rescue operation of both homes but did not find anyone inside.
Power lines were down causing an electrical safety hazard for the firefighters. Seattle City Light arrived and turned off power to both homes.
At the height of the fire there were 72 firefighters and 31 fire apparatus on scene.
It took firefighters 15 minutes to knock down the fire in both homes. Within 35 minutes the fire was under control. It was an hour and 15 minutes before the flames were completely extinguished.
Investigators determined the cause of the explosions were three propane tanks that caught fire and exploded.
The damage to the primary structure was $150,000 to the structure and $50,000 to the contents. The exposure damage to the home to the west was assessed at $75000 to the structure.
Red Cross was called to assist two adult males with temporary housing after they were displaced by the fire.
There were no injuries.