April 29—Seattle Fire Investigators determined an early morning apartment fire in West Seattle was caused by an electrical malfunction in the kitchen range which ignited combustible materials in the kitchen. Investigators say the kitchen fire extended to the living room of the bottom level unit. The fire is being ruled accidental.
At 2:10 a.m. a 911 call came into a dispatcher at the Fire Alarm Center reporting a fire at the four-story complex located in the 9000 block of 35th Avenue SW. Ladder Company 11 arrived to find heavy smoke inside the complex and flames coming from a bottom level unit. It took 12 minutes to knock down the flames and an hour to completely extinguish the fire inside the first floor unit. Firefighters were able to contain the flames to the one unit.
32 people were displaced when smoke filled the hallways of the complex. A Seattle Public Library staff member opened up a classroom at the Southwest Branch, located across the street from the apartment complex, to temporarily shelter the evacuated residents. A King County Metro Bus was brought in to keep the residents warm.
The apartment resident says a smoke detector alerted her to the fire which allowed her to safely escape. The Red Cross was called to assist the one resident with temporary shelter.
The damage estimate is $47,000.