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Posted on: July 18, 2017

Challenging Brush Fire Caused by Youth Setting Off Illegal Fireworks

At 9:42 p.m. Monday, crews from Elligsen Road Station 56 were called to a difficult and fast-moving brush fire in the area of Southwest Cowlitz Drive in Tualatin. With the visualization of smoke in the distance, crews called for a full first-alarm response. On arrival, crews were faced with a fast-moving fire in a greenspace that bordered two homes. An aggressive fire attack stopped the progression of the fire, but not before it proceeded down a near-vertical embankment.

Crews fought the stubborn fire for nearly an hour prior to declaring the fire under control. The limited pedestrian access required firefighters to stretch in several hundred feet of hose through steep terrain to extinguish. Additionally, crews had to contend with an active railroad track, moderate winds, and poison oak. No injuries were reported.

Though faced with several challenges, firefighters were able to limit the damage to a few sections of fence adjacent to the greenspace. An estimation on area burned is approximately 100 feet by 140 feet.

With assistance from Tualatin Police Department, investigators have determined the cause of the fire to be from two youth lighting off an illegal roman candle firework. Investigators will return to the scene in daylight today to get an accurate assessment of the area involved and determine the extent of the damage.

This serves as an important reminder of the dangers of improper and illegal use of fireworks. Additionally, with the extremely dry weather this summer, TVF&R would like to reemphasize the Burn Ban enacted on July 10.

For more information, visit our website at www.tvfr.com for more tips, including how to protect a home located in a wildland urban interface from a potential wildfire.
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