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NEWS RELEASE 03/14/12: Portland Fire & Rescue Responds to Early Morning Fire at Old Town Pizza


March 15, 2012
2:34 PM

Portland Fire investigators have determined that the March 14, 2012 fire at Old Town Pizza, 5201 NE Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., was accidental in nature and was caused by combustibles too close to a heat source.

Investigators identified a table lamp in which they believe a canted lamp shade ignited from prolonged contact with a light bulb. The burning shade is believed to have fallen to the floor where it smoldered before extending into the concealed wall space and spreading to other parts of the building.


March 14, 2012

10:12 AM

At 5:37 am Portland Fire Station 14 (Albert Park) was dispatched to reports of a fire alarm at the Old Town Pizza Restaurant located at 5201 NE Martin Luther King Blvd.

When firefighters arrived on scene, they found the restaurant filled with smoke. Firefighters quickly called for additional resources to help contain the fire in the restaurant. The building, which was built in the 1940's, had been divided into four separate businesses.

Once firefighters got inside the building with hose lines, they located the fire between the restaurant's loft and bathrooms. Ladder truck firefighters worked to clear out the smoke with mechanical fans as quickly as possible, while engine firefighters attacked the fire with hose lines. The restaurant, which contains a small brewery, had several containers filled with carbon dioxide, which was used in brewery operations. One container did leak during the fire, but the contents were determined to have evaporated.

According to Portland Fire Battalion Chief Bob Zavodsky, "Early detection by the fire alarm system enabled Portland Fire crews to arrive on scene in just two minutes. Additionally, activation of the sprinkler system was pivotal in containing the fire to the room of origin."

The neighboring business sustained some water damage in the fire. One firefighter was injured in the overhaul operations after the fire. A fire investigator was called in to determine the cause of the fire and damage is estimated at $50,000.


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