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Fire damage to Sandy subdivision could top $750,000

Three homes destroyed in Cascadia Village
by: Special to, Three unfinished houses on Cascadia Village Drive burn early Saturday morning. The blaze apparently started in the house on the right, spreading to each house in a matter of minutes.

A fire destroyed three homes in the Cascadia Village subdivision and threatened several more early Saturday morning.

Early fire district estimates place the total damage of the blaze at up to $750,000, although fire officials believe that number could be much higher, depending on what was inside the houses at the time of the fire.

Sandy firefighters were dispatched to Cascadia Village Drive at Barrington Avenue at 3:24 a.m. Saturday and quickly recruited help from Hoodland Fire District, the Boring Fire District, the Estacada Fire District and the Gresham Fire Department.

Neighbors say that the fire began in a corner of the attic of the house at 38816 Cascadia Village Drive, and quickly spread throughout the structure, due to a lack of drywall and the amount of air inside the house.

In less than 10 minutes, flames had jumped to the two houses immediately south of the engulfed house. All three homes, unfinished and uninhabited, were a total loss.

No injuries were reported as a result of the incident.

Sandy Deputy Fire Chief Phil Schneider said firefighters concentrated their efforts to the north of the first house, since those homes - a set of six row houses - were inhabited. They successfully kept the fire from penetrating those homes, although the occupant of the adjacent row house had to leave his home. About 15 people were evacuated.

Houses across from the triple-house fire showed evidence of heat damage, with vinyl siding buckling and peeling. The blaze caused the window of an unfinished house across the street to fall out of place and onto the driveway below. The heat deformed a "Schultzy" portable toilet.

Investigators were at the scene Saturday afternoon trying to determine the cause of the fire.

Neighbors reported that at around 10:30 p.m. they heard illegal fireworks in the general vicinity of the homes. Fire investigators are looking at that as one of many possible causes.

Read more about this story in the July 12 edition of the Sandy Post.