Fire destroys home

A West Bremerton family lost everything they owned Monday when an electrical fire ignited in their home Tuesday. Two children ages 12 and 15 were home at the time of the fire and escaped uninjured leaving even their shoes behind.

Fire District No. 7 crews were called at about 2:30 p.m. to the 600 block of Charlotte Street where crews saw flames and heavy smoke in the front windows of the three-bedroom home. Bremerton Fire Department and Jackson Park firefighters assisted in extinguishing the accidental blaze.

The fire, which destroyed the home and all its contents, was apparently caused when an electrical cord failed, said Ed Iskra, Kitsap deputy fire marshal.

According to the report the cord had been damaged by being up against the bed and the wall. This caused the insulation to fail and an arc of electricity was exposed. The 15-year-old-girl saw the arc in her bedroom and called her mom.

When she couldn’t reach their mother she and her younger brother went outside and called 911.

The smoke also activated the fire alarm at nearby West Hills Elementary.

An electrical arc burns at about 7,000 degrees and will incinerate anything in its path, Iskra said. The bedding and mattress were among the first to ignite, which is comparable to lighting gasoline. Iskra said an older home such as this one typically has less drywall, which means the fire spreads faster throughout the home.

Pamela Hamilton, the children’s mother left work early to take the children to a dentist appointment. She arrived at the home and was reunited with her children at a nearby church.

They had lived in the home for three years and had no renter’s insurance. They have received assistance from the Red Cross and are temporarily living at a Bremerton motel.

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