It's that time of year when Yakima Firefighters see an increase in fires, many caused by space heaters or other electrical problems.
Yakima Fire Department Firefighters were called to a fire early Friday in the 500 block of West Yakima Avenue that caused an estimated $80,000 in damages. No injuries were reported from the fire.

The fire was reported early Friday morning

A press release says Firefighters arrived at about 2:25 am and found a dumpster on fire that had extended into a 2 story commercial business. Smoke was coming from the roof when Firefighters started to douse the flames. Fire crews called a second alarm and received assistance from neighboring fire districts and off-duty City of Yakima personnel. The fire was contained near the alley but the damage was extensive. The press release says the fire "damage extended from the alley and into a garage portion of the building. Smoke damage extended throughout the rest of the building."
The cause of the fire is under investigation but firefighters believe it started in a dumpster near the business.

Firefighters have lots of warnings for home and business owners

Firefighters urge business owners to beware of the large amount of dumpster fires that are reported in Yakima every year. They also warn homeowners to clean chimneys and woodstoves at this time of year to prevent fires. They also warn not to use extension cords on space heaters and to watch for clothing and drapes that could catch fire by getting too close to baseboard heaters in homes or businesses.

The state Fire Marshal's Office is warning about clothes dryers

The The Washington State Fire Marshal’s Office is also out with a warning about fires caused by clothes dryers. Last year in Washington State, there were a reported 352 fires caused by appliances which included clothes dryers.  More home clothes dryer fires occur in the fall and winter months and peak in the month for January.

The Office reminds residents of clothes dryer fire safety by practicing these simple tips:


·         Do not use the dryer without a lint filter.

·         Clean the lint filter before and after each load of laundry. Don’t forget to clean the back of the dryer where lint can build up. The leading cause of home clothes dryer fires is the failure to clean them.

·         Clean the lint filter with a nylon brush at least every six months or more often if it becomes clogged.

·         Clean lint out of the vent pipe every three months.

·         Have your dryer cleaned regularly by a professional, especially if it is taking longer than normal for clothes to dry.

·         Have gas-powered dryers inspected every year by a professional to ensure that the gas line and connection are together and free of leaks.

·         Rigid or flexible metal venting material should be used to sustain proper air flow and drying time.

·         Don’t overload your dryer.

·         Turn the dryer off if you leave home or when you go to bed.


Doing laundry is often part of an everyday routine so keeping this important appliance in good working order will keep you and your family fire safe.

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