Man Burned, Dumpsters Set Ablaze in Overnight Wenatchee Valley Fires
A man is recovering in the hospital after receiving burns in a brush fire along the banks of the Columbia River in East Wenatchee on Tuesday night.
Crews from the Wenatchee Valley Fire Department were dispatched to the 1600 block of Sunset Highway at 8:18 p.m. where they discovered the blaze burning in heavy brush and trees about 200 yards from the river.
WVFD spokesperson Kay McKellar says firefighters found the injured man after extinguishing the roughly-2,500 square foot fire.
"While the rest of the fire folks did the mop up, the battalion chief located a burn victim in a sleeping bag and assisted in getting him to an ambulance. He was then transported to Central Washington Hospital and then flown to Harborview (Medical Center in Seattle) from there."
The cause of the fire is still under investigation, however. it's suspected that an out-of-control campfire might have been responsible.
Approximately four hours later, at just after midnight on Wednesday, WVFD crews were called to the report of a fire outside the JCPenney store in the 1300 block of North Miller Street in Wenatchee.
"The crews arrived to find there was an active fire against the structure and a dumpster was on fire," said McKellar. "A crew went inside and they were able to stop any fire from extending into the building. They also noted that another dumpster had been set on fire on the other side of the building."
No injuries were reported and damage to the building's exterior was minimal.
McKellar says its suspected the fires at the store were deliberately set and the Arson Alarm Foundation is offering a $10,000 reward to anyone who can provide credible information that leads to the capture of the person or persons responsible.
Anyone with information about the incident should contact the Wenatchee Valley Fire Department and ask for Fire Marshal Kurt Blanchard.
The fires at JCPenney and Sunset Highway were among a dozen that the WVFD responded to within a twelve-hour span between Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning.