UPDATED — Heater blamed for blaze at Sequim storage unit
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Joe Smillie/Peninsula Daily News
Clallam County Fire District No. 3 Firefighter Troy Tennesson cuts open a door to a burning unit at Sequim Stow Places on Wednesday.

By Joe Smillie
Peninsula Daily News

SEQUIM — A fire that gutted a storage unit Wednesday was caused by furniture having been placed too close to a space heater, investigators said Thursday.

The unit at Sequim Stow Places, 741 N. Sequim Ave., was full of furniture when it burned.

Patrick Young, public information officer for Clallam County Fire District No. 3, said Thursday that investigators determined the fire was an accident.

Young said the storage units have space heaters built in. Renters can use them for a fee.

Fire crews were called out shortly before 5 p.m. for a report of smoke coming from the main block of units, Young said.

The fire was extinguished in about 15 minutes.

Firefighters used saws to cut open the unit's aluminum door, while another crew cut ventilation holes in the roof.

Young said the fire did not spread to the neighboring units, though they were damaged by smoke and water from the firefighters' hoses.

The roof was damaged but remained intact, Young said.

A piano and some other items from the scorched storage unit were salvaged by firefighters.

Many other items, including a mattress and several pieces of furniture, were too damaged to recover.

Sequim Stow Places is owned by Larry and Marilyn McHugh.

Their son, Mark, said the destroyed storage unit had just been rented Tuesday.

Young said the contents of the storage unit belonged to the daughter of the couple who had rented the unit.

They were unsure of the value of the items or whether they were insured, Young said.

Sequim Stow Places is insured by the McHughs, Young said, but the amount of damage the fire caused to the property had not been determined as of Thursday.



Sequim-Dungeness Valley Editor Joe Smillie can be reached at 360-681-2390, ext. 5052, or at jsmillie@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: March 07. 2013 6:56PM
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