A vehicle fire spread to a pawn shop and caused major damage at about 2:45 a.m. Wednesday in the 100 block of Central Avenue North in Kent.
A fire engine was dispatched to a car fire, according to a Puget Sound Fire media release. When firefighters arrived, they discovered three vehicles burning next to a building whose exterior wall and eves were now on fire. As water was being applied to the fire, an officer upgraded the incident to a commercial fire which brought three more units and two ladder trucks.
Command arrived and seeing the rapid growth of the fire inside the building called for a second alarm, which brought four more units.
As the fire continued to grow, three elevated master streams which can spray large volumes of water down on the fire, had been strategically positioned such that when the fire broke through the roof they immediately began to knock the fire down.
The tactics worked, and the fire was held in check saving the adjacent auto body shop and glass store to the north.
With the fire being held in place and getting smaller, firefighters went in the auto body shop and checked for any possible individuals who might have spent the night and also making sure the fire did not spread through the common wall. Searches showed nobody inside and only a light smoky haze with no fire extension.
PSE arrived and disconnected power to the pawn shop where the main fire damage was and also shut off a gas line which was damaged by the fire. Kent Police helped with traffic control.
Puget Sound Fire officials said because of the quick work of the crews and solid tactics on part of command, the collision center and glass store were back in operation at the opening of business hours.
In addition to Puget Sound fire units, Valley Regional Fire Authority and South King Fire and Rescue responded to help extinguish the fire. Zone 3 Rehab and South King County Medic One assisted with firefighter care. Belfor provided security to the damaged structure.
Investigators have yet to determine what caused the fire.