Posted: August 11, 2013 5:56:56 PM PDT
A combination of Bellingham Fire and WA State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) fire crews worked for much of the day to contain and extinguish a windblown, ½ acre, brush fire on Clark's Point in south Bellingham. Clark's Point is a densely forested 78 acre peninsula jutting into Chuckanut Bay off the south end of the Edgemore neighborhood.
A resident on Bayside Road originally reported the smell of smoke at 2:16 a.m., resulting in the response of the four-person fire engine crew from Harris Avenue to investigate. After two hours of searching the area, the crew was unable to locate the source of the smoke. However, two hours later, at 6:03 a.m., people on a boat heading out to Eliza Island were able to see the fire and relay an accurate location to 9-1-1.
The crew from Harris Avenue responded again, this time joined by two more fire engine crews and a Battalion Chief. At approximately one-quarter of the way down the Point on the Bellingham Bay side, crews found a ½ acre brush fire burning up from the shoreline in steep terrain. A strong Southwest breeze was fanning the fire. Using hose streams, the crews were able to contain the fire by approximately 7:30 a.m., and then called for the DNR to complete final extinguishment and mop up. Although stretched thin due to wildfire activity in Eastern Washington, DNR responded with three, three-person engine crews and a supervisor. DNR spent the day extinguishing hot spots and plans to monitor the area through the next week for signs of a rekindle.
Cause of the fire is undetermined. However, due to the history of past fires in the area where the fire started, the fire is thought to be human-caused.
Because the danger presented by wildland fires to the families who live on Clark's Point and the adjacent neighborhood, fires are prohibited on the Point. Anyone seeing signs of a fire on Clark's Point should call 9-1-1.
Bill Newbold, Assistant Chief
Bellingham Fire Department