News

Fire destroys garage north of Fairfield

A fire destroyed a rural Fairfield couple’s garage Tuesday night.

The blaze occurred at the home of Doug and Sandy Adams, who live in Ming Circle about 6 miles north of Fairfield. The Fairfield Fire Department was at the scene from about 8 p.m. until almost midnight, receiving assistance from Packwood Fire Department.

Firefighters were able to extinguish the fire before it spread to the house. No injuries were reported, but the garage was a total loss. A report from the Fairfield Fire Department states that fans were running on the south side of the garage where the fire started, though the cause of the fire is unknown.

Doug said he and Sandy were home at the time, and saw through their window flames coming from their garage, which is also their wood shop. Doug went outside and turned on the garden hose. Instead of focusing on the garage, which he believed was already too far gone, Doug turned his attention to the house, wetting it as much as he could so it did not catch fire as well.

“My first thought when I saw the flames was that the garage was completely gone, there would be no salvaging anything inside,” he said.

Doug noticed that most of the house was wet from the rain earlier that day, but the part facing the garage was dry because of the fire.

“I actually burned my hand holding the hose because the heat was so strong,” he said. “I had to move behind a tree.”

Doug said the couple received a big help from the wind, which blew the fire away from their house and propane tank.

“If the wind had gone in a different direction, the propane tank would have gone up,” he said.

As the firefighters beat back the flames, Doug began to worry about a member of the family who was still unaccounted for: the dog. He worried that she might have tried to hide from the fire in a corner of the garage.

“I couldn’t find her in the house,” he said.

It turned out the dog was cowering outside on the other side of the house because she was scared of the popping noises and explosions coming from the garage.

Two of the Adams’ cars were damaged in the fire. The side of one car melted and paint peeled off. A window melted in their truck, as did several headlight lamps.

Doug and Sandy had nothing but praise for the firefighters who came to assist.

“They were unbelievable and amazing, and I’d even say comforting,” Doug said. “They were concerned about us, asking if anybody was still inside, asking about our pets.”

Doug said the couple doesn’t need any donations since the fire was limited to their garage/shop.

“Maybe just a table saw or a planer,” he joked.

Doug said he experienced a devastating fire about 30 or 40 years ago. At that time, he didn’t have insurance, but this time he does.

“I would feel uncomfortable [taking donations] because I know other people who have had catastrophic disasters that need things more than we do,” he said.