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Two homeless after RV catches on fire

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Blaze destroys vehicle parked on Northwest Dunbar Avenue in Troutdale.

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO - An RV was destroyed around 8:30 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 13 in Troutdale. Two were left homeless after an unexplained blaze gutted a recreational vehicle at 8:18 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 13 in Troutdale. No injuries were reported.

"The cause is undetermined at this particular moment, but I'm fairly confident that it's not arson," explained Deputy Fire Marshal Kyle Stuart. "There were too many possibilities to narrow it down to one."

Two men — described as the elderly owner of the vehicle and his caretaker — were elsewhere when the conflagration erupted, Stuart said. The RV was parked on the 700 block of Northwest Dunbar Avenue, near where the street dead-ends at Interstate 84. It's essentially a service road for an industrial and corporate park on Marine Drive.

Gresham police had already marked the vehicle for towing after it failed to move for some time. Valued at $10,300, the RV was a complete loss. The value of lost possessions is estimated at $1,500.

"RVs really aren't made from fire-resistant materials, like homes and offices," Stuart said. "An ember could travel and light something on the other end of the RV. With that fuel load, fire spreads quickly."

After a passerby reported the fire, Engine 75 arrived at 8:26 a.m. The fire was completely under control within four minutes.

Both residents said they had secured the RV before departing early in the morning. Investigators have found no signs of forced entry.

The Red Cross responded to the blaze site around 11:15 a.m. Spokeswoman Monique Dugaw said the organization typically provides emergency housing in the form of hotel vouchers.