Investigators seek cause of Sequim building fire
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Joe Smillie/Peninsula Daily News
A fire investigator assesses on Tuesday damage done to the Sequim Consignment Co. in the May 19 fire that all but destroyed the building that housed the consignment shop and Baja Cantina Mexican restaurant.

By Joe Smillie
Peninsula Daily News

SEQUIM –– Insurance investigators began Tuesday morning to examine the wreckage of a west Sequim building that burned May 19 to determine the cause of the blaze.

Patrick Young, spokesman for Clallam County Fire District No. 3, said fire officials believe the fire started in the attic of the 820 W. Washington St. building that housed Baja Cantina Mexican restaurant and Sequim Consignment Co.

“But it's their scene now,” he said of the insurance investigators.

“These guys will narrow down now with a fine-tooth comb 1) where the fire started and 2) what caused it.”

Firefighters from District 3, along with Clallam County Fire District No. 2 and the city of Port Angeles, spent five hours extinguishing the blaze that started shortly after 1 p.m. and closed off traffic on the city's main arterial.

A Fire District No. 3 ladder truck was on the scene Tuesday to allow investigators to get a bird's-eye view of the building, which had most of its roof destroyed by the blaze.

Charred pieces of the roof littered the floor of the consignment shop Tuesday as sunshine poured in through the exposed ceiling beams.

Excavators today

Young said the investigators expected to bring in excavators and man lifts today to close in on the cause and origin of the fire.

Candy Diesen, owner of the building, said Saturday she would have to wait until the investigation is completed to see whether the building can be rebuilt or if it was destroyed by the fire.

The owners of the businesses in the building, too, are awaiting the final report before deciding if they could wait for a rebuild or find new locations, Diesen said.


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

Last modified: May 28. 2014 7:07AM
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