As of Tuesday, March 11, 2014
A human-caused fire in a 1973 single-wide mobile home in Wamic Thursday evening displaced six people and will probably mean the total loss of the trailer, officials said.
Nobody was home when the fire was reported Thursday at 5:25 p.m.
Some confusion exists as to the occupancy status of the mobile home. The American Red Cross said it assisted two adults and four children with emergency housing and cash assistance for clothing and food. They are staying elsewhere in the state, the Red Cross said.
Oregon State Police Arson Det. Doug Larson said electricity had already been shut off to the mobile home and it was his understanding the tenants were in the process of moving their property out of the structure.
Two dogs were reported to be in the building but Larson said no dogs were found in the mobile home.
“Red Cross was giving the impression people were displaced because of that fire and I don’t think that was the case, I think they were already out,” Larson said.
Curtis Peetz, direct services support manager for the American Red Cross Cascades Region, said the Red Cross confirmed the mobile home was the primary residence of the displaced individuals. Typically, that’s done by checking with the local fire department, he said.
The Wamic fire chief could not be reached for comment.
A state fire marshal responded to the fire and the Oregon State Police is the lead agency investigating the fire.
Larson said it would take several weeks to finish his investigation.
He said that while the structure wasn’t collapsed due to the fire, “there was sufficient damage to it that it’s not rebuildable.”
The owner of the mobile home could not be reached for comment.
A police log entry for the fire said a deputy pounded on all the doors and windows and nobody was home.
The log said the fire appeared to be started inside on the northwest front corner of the house. The Wasco County Sheriff’s office, in its initial report on the fire before it turned the case over to the state police, logged it as a reckless burning case, said Chief Deputy Lane Magill.
As is typical with cases where people are displaced by disaster, the Red Cross provided three days of lodging for the six people, said Peetz.
A fire of still-unknown origin in The Dalles early Tuesday morning destroyed a home’s carport and a car in the 100 block of West 8th Street.
The occupants of the home were not hurt, said Mid-Columbia Fire & Rescue Capt. Steve Biehn.
The call came in at 1:40 a.m. and the cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Responding to the call were about 15 personnel from Mid-Columbia Fire & Rescue and Dallesport Fire Department.
The fire burned a small portion of the home itself, Biehn said.