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Redmond assisted-living fire prompts evacuations


A southwest Redmond assisted living facility was hit by a smoky fire early Tuesday that prompted evacuation of over a dozen residents – but the situation could have been far worse, if not for the building’s fire alarm and sprinkler systems, officials said.

Redmond Fire and Rescue was called out around 12:35 a.m. to a reported structure fire at The Heights Assisted Living, at 3000 SW 32 nd Street, said Fire Marshal Traci Cooper. Crews arrived to find the first floor of the facility’s southern wing filled with smoke.

The building is equipped with a fire alarm system that provided early detection and warning of the blaze, the fire marshal said. A fire sprinkler system activated, containing the fire to a mechanical room.

Firefighters quickly finished putting out the blaze while staff and Redmond police officers evacuated the first and second floors of the south wing.

Initially, 14 residents were evacuated to a neighboring nursing home, Cooper said. Residents from the second floor were allowed to return, while the seven from the first floor were to remain at the nursing home until repairs are made and resulting hazards are evaluated, Cooper said.

There were no reported injuries, she said, thanks to the alarm and sprinkler systems and the quick response from staff and first responders. A damage estimate was being compiled.

The fire was found to have been caused by storage of combustible items too close to a natural gas-fired water heater, the fire marshal said, urging everyone to make sure you keep three feet of clearance around heat sources and combustible items.

Three engines, a medic and 10 career firefighters were involved in the incident, and Oregon State Police also provided mutual-aid assistance, Cooper said.

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