Tag: house fire
By Caleb Hutton
Two fires in north Whatcom County were ruled accidents this week by the fire marshal.
The info comes from Fire Marshal Will Anderson.
- Fire No. 1. A 50-by-100-foot barn at 9451 Swanson Road was destroyed Dec. 16, when a homeowner intentionally left an oil heater on overnight for his John Deere tractor. An electrical problem sparked the blaze. It was the first time he’d used the heater this year. The structure was mostly a roof, with concrete siding to support it. Damage was estimated at $100,000.
- Fire No. 2. A 20-by-30-foot home on Henley Street in Birch Bay was ruled “undetermined,” but an accident. The resident, a man in his 50s, was awakened by the smoke at 5:55 a.m. Dec. 17, and suffered burns to his feet as he escaped. The home — a vacation-style house built in the mid-20th century — burnt down to almost nothing. The most likely cause of the fire was a baseboard heater that was too close to a pile of the resident’s belongings. But Anderson said because no crime is suspected, he’d leave it up to the insurance company to investigate further. The day after the fire, some smoke was reported coming from the charred remains. It turned out to be minor and was quickly extinguished.
- Fire No. 3. See this story that will be in tomorrow’s paper. The lede: “A buildup of peanut dust and debris is suspected of causing a small fire in the Golden Nut Company’s roasting room earlier this week, the Whatcom County fire marshal said Thursday, Dec. 27.” Here’s the story that was in today’s paper.
By Caleb Hutton
Via police scanner traffic:
A 911 caller on the west side of Lake Samish reported seeing smoke rising from a window at a home on the opposite shore early Friday, July 6.
About a half dozen fire trucks responded at 8 a.m. to a brown house with white trim at 563 Cedar Acres Street.
Firefighters arriving at the scene confirmed there was smoke — rising from a pizza cooker on a deck — but no fire.
By Caleb Hutton
The sheriff’s office tied up a few loose ends in the death of Belinda Barnett, 45, on Friday afternoon, June 29.
Barnett died this week in a doublewide mobile home fire at 6128 Poppy Court, in the Paradise Lakes area. She was under investigation for a $105,710 theft from Swan’s Moving and Storage in Bellingham, the sheriff’s office disclosed Friday.
A detective had tried to talk to Barnett early Wednesday, first by knocking on her door, then by using a neighbor’s telephone. But Barnett didn’t answer the door.
Firefighters arrived about 9:15 a.m. to find her home on fire. Barnett’s body was found near the front door. She died from smoke inhalation, Dr. Gary Goldfogel said. Goldfogel called the death a “likely suicide.”
The sheriff’s office put the following in writing on Friday:
It is suspected that Barnett may have been despondent over the criminal investigation into a substantial theft from her employer, Swan’s Moving and Storage in Bellingham, where she worked between May 2010 and January 2012.
Deputies had probable cause to arrest her for three counts of first-degree theft.
Here are a few photos, shot on a cell phone Thursday evening, showing the home. In the first photo, taken from the driveway, you can see the worst of the damage is at the back of the house where the master bedroom was. Surprising how much of the home was left.