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Man dies in Corbett house fire


A man's body was found dead inside a house that burned down early Tuesday morning, Dec. 17, in a remote part of the Columbia River Gorge.

The man’s body was found in the basement, said Phil Dearixon, fire chief for the Multnomah County Rural Fire Protection District No. 14.

Dearixon had initially stated that crews found no one inside the home during the preliminary check.

However, he later said that during the primary search, firefighters had only canvassed the first and second floors of the two-story home and were unable to enter the basement immediately because of the intensity of the blaze.

"We haven't had a fire death in this district since the mid-1970s," Dearixon said.

A neighbor noticed the flames in the 35000 block of Southeast Hurlburt Road and called 9-1-1 shortly after midnight, Dearixon said. The woman and her husband told emergency dispatchers that they didn’t believe anyone was home at the time because the homeowner’s vehicle was gone.

Firefighters arrived to find flames showing from the basement and both floors of the home. Crews had to truck in water to battle the fire because there were no nearby hydrants.

Dearixon said the fire appears to have started in the basement, but an investigator would need to confirm to origin and cause. The Oregon State Fire Marshal is assisting with the investigation. A damage estimate was not provided, although the home is considered a complete loss. A medical examiner was been called to the scene.

This story was provide by KOIN Local 6, news partner of the Pamplin Media Group.