Neighbor’s warning saves families in fourplex fire

Washington County

(Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A vigilant neighbor’s warning may have saved lives from a fire that impacted seven adults and five children early Saturday morning.

The residential fire started just before 6 a.m. Saturday in the 19000 block of Northwest Mahama Place, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue said. Multiple 911 callers reported seeing flames coming from the ground level of one of the fourplex’s units.

By the time firefighters arrived, intense flames had burst from the front door and windows — but there was no one inside.

All of the building’s occupants were already evacuated thanks to a neighbor who saw the fire and darted across the street to warn them, TVF&R said. Fire officials said the neighbor’s door-pounding alert came just in time to wake up the residents before the inferno spread to their bedroom.

Crews brought the fire under control within half an hour from the time of dispatch, but officials said the blaze caused extensive damage to one of the units. An adjacent unit was also moderately torched, displacing both families.

The other two units were unscathed by the flames, and no injuries were reported, according to TVF&R.

Authorities have not yet released details on what caused the fire, but they reminded landlords and homeowners to ensure properties have working smoke alarms and fire sprinklers — two critical safety measures the fourplex did not have, TVF&R said.

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