Hubbard FD fights fire twice

HUBBARD — A house fire extinguished Monday afternoon rekindled early Tuesday, according to the Hubbard Eagle Joint Fire District.

The department was called back at 2:53 a.m. to 105 Grandview Ave. by a driver who saw a plume of thick smoke coming from the ranch-style brick home already boarded up from the fire that broke out shortly after 1 p.m. Monday.

Harry Dripps, who called 911 to report Tuesday’s fire, told the dispatcher he attempted to get into the house, but the smoke was too thick.

“I hope no one is in the house,” Dripps told the 911 dispatcher. “It (the fire) is going crazy. I can’t get near it. Smoke is coming out all over the place. There is too much smoke. I could not go in there.”

Eagle Joint District Fire Department Chief Ron Stanish said the Tuesday’s fire rekindled in the center of the house and spread outward.

The cause of the Monday afternoon fire has not officially been determined, but “the owner of house called 911 (Monday afternoon) saying there was a fire that was caused by an electric blanket on his bed that caught on fire,” Stanish said. “The blanket, according to the caller, had been on the bed all day.”

According to the 911 dispatch call summary, Arthur Kourian, is the occupant of the house.

Stanish said the property owner initially attempted to put out the fire. When the 911 dispatch received the call, the caller was told to leave the house and to take any pets. Stanish said the house was fully engulfed when the department arrived on the scene.

“The fire started in the bedroom, moved to an adjoining bathroom and into the attic,” Stanish said. “The attic was filled with cellulose paper insulation that caused the fire to burn quickly.”

Stanish said the department worked to soak the home, especially the attic area, for more than two hours in an effort to make sure all of the fire’s embers were completely doused.

After it was determined to be out, a private company boarded up the house, according to the fire chief. All of the electricity and gas were turned off in the home.

While the cause of the second fire has not been determined, Stanish said embers from the first fire could have smoldered throughout the day, causing the fire to reignite. A state fire marshal is investigating.

Stanish said the first fire may have done between $100,000 to $125,000 worth of damage to the property. No estimate has been given on the amount of additional damage that the second blaze may have caused.

The fire chief said electric blankets should not be left on beds unattended.

rsmith@tribtoday.com

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