By Arwyn Rice
Peninsula Daily News
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The flames blazed so brilliantly on the dark gray day that they were visible from East First Street about 15 blocks north.
The column of smoke drew onlookers from surrounding neighborhoods.
The fire reportedly began in a back room at 1119 E. Park Ave., just east of Franklin Elementary School.
It was reported to 9-1-1 dispatchers at 3:18 p.m.
By 3:45 p.m., there was little remaining of the upstairs portion of the home, and city and Clallam County Fire District No. 2 firefighters were still battling the fire at 4:15 p.m.
Residents of the home, who were not immediately identified, remained in their yard with firefighters, watching the horror of their home burning.
A passer-by, Greg Roberts of Sequim, was driving through the area and saw the flames from a street north of East Park Avenue just before firefighters arrived.
“There were two small explosions — boom, boom!” Roberts said.
Firefighters arrived soon after the explosions, he said.
Two engines and a ladder truck from the Port Angeles Fire Department and an engine from Fire District 2 responded to the fire, which was located off Park Avenue in an area of homes on a slope that overlooks the city and Port Angeles Harbor.
There was little room for the fire trucks to reach the home, which was located behind a street-front property with only a narrow access driveway along the side.
Three fire trucks had to be parked on the street — police had closed Park Avenue between Washington and Porter streets — and hoses ran along the driveway to feed water to firefighters.
Reporter Arwyn Rice can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5070, or at email@example.com.