By Paul Gottlieb
Olympic Peninsula News Group
A fire that began in a second-floor living room recliner damaged the second story of a West End home early Thursday morning.
Property owner Catherine Ann Johnson, the lone occupant, was not injured at the two-bedroom house in the 100 block of Elk Loop Drive about 2 miles east of Forks, Forks Fire District 1 Chief Bill Paul said.
He said a smoke alarm alerted her to the blaze after she had fallen asleep in the second-floor bedroom shortly after midnight Wednesday.
Paul said that after the fire, Johnson was staying at a neighbor’s house and that the first floor may be habitable once the heat and smoke damage to the entire second floor is addressed.
The floor has two bedrooms, a kitchen, a bathroom and a living room.
The roof remained intact.
Paul said Johnson, a nonsmoker, told him she lit candles earlier Wednesday evening but had checked the living room around 11 p.m. Wednesday. Nothing was amiss.
The case remains under investigation, although the fire remains under investigation, he said.
Johnson has fire insurance.
“I don’t think we’ll find a cause,” Paul added. “That’s up to the insurance investigator to find a cause.”
Johnson called 9-1-1 at 12:33 a.m. Thursday to report the fire and went to a neighbor’s house, he said.
A fire district engine, utility vehicle, two command vehicles and 10 district personnel responded to the dispatch within minutes, snuffing out the blaze by about 12:45 a.m.
“We knocked the fire down really fast,” Paul said.