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  • 28 Nov 2014

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Woman critically injured in 'vacant' house fire

by: PORTLAND FIRE & RESCUE - A woman was critically injured in a fire in this house Monday morning.Portland firefighters battled two fires at supposedly vacant homes in two days.

A 52-year-old woman illegally living in a vacant Southeast Portland house was critically injured in the first one, which broke out Monday morning.

The name of the victim was not immediately released.

According to Portland Fire & Rescue, at 8:30 a.m. on June 16, neighbors reported seeing smoke and fire from the front a home at 9809 S.E. Holgate. They also said the home was recently occupied.

Firefighters arrived and found heavy smoke and flames visible from a front window. The crew from Ladder Truck 7 was assigned to search the home. They found one unconscious adult female and brought her out to EMT and Paramedic firefighters of Engine 29, who were assigned to provide medical assistance.

Two firefighters provided Advanced Life Support medical care during ambulance transport to Emanuel Hospital. The victim suffered significant inhalation and burn injuries, and is currently listed in critical condition.

Fire investigators have determined that the fire was accidental and began on a couch. The ignition source is unknown at this time. No other injuries to firefighters, residents or pets were reported.

Investigators also discovered that the home was actually vacant and the injured resident was living there illegally. The home had no working utilities, and most importantly no working smoke alarms.

No one was injured in the second one, which fully engulfed a boarded-up home in Southeast Portland Tuesday morning. Early indications suggest the fire was human-caused, however.

According to PF&R, crews arrived at the home, located near Southeast 82nd and Flavel Road, around 6 a.m. on June 17 after 911 dispatchers received multiple reports of thick black smoke in the area.

The home was already severely damaged by the time firefighters arrived, and the boards and a partially collapsed roof further complicated their response.

After dousing the house with water to cool it down, crews rushed inside, but found no victims. PF&R officials believe a homeless person may have been inside at one time.

A fire investigator remained on scene well after the fire was out to determine the cause.

KOIN News 6 contributed to this story.