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Abandoned Victorian Burns in Eureka

Late night structure fire stays contained to one building with help from Humboldt Bay Fire

On Wednesday night, Humboldt Bay Fire responded to a structure fire on the corner of 8th & H streets in Eureka.

The structure in question appeared to be an abandoned Victorian house, with the damage contained to just the single building. Following calls, officials were on scene quickly, but were unsure how long the house had been burning before they arrived. 

Humboldt Bay Firefighters shoot water over the back of a burning house as they respond to structure fire in Eureka on Oct. 30. | Photo by Thomas Lal

Public Information Officer for HBF Amy Conlin was on scene and confirmed that there was no humans, animals or pets found in the building when they arrived and that the fire had been burning for some time before they got the call. 

“By the time the first truck 8181 was to the scene, there was black smoke pushing through the roof,” Conlin said. “So it had been going for a little bit.”

Conlin also noted that while the cause of the fire would likely remain unknown until HBF concluded their investigation into the matter, the blaze could have been the result of people staying in the vacant property in an attempt to stay out of the colder nights.

The burned out roof of a house in Eureka can be seen as Humboldt Bay Fire responds to a structure fire on Oct. 30. The surrounding houses were not damaged by the fire. | Photo by Thomas Lal

“It looks like it was a vacant building,” Conlin said. “So it could have been some kind of spontaneous accident with the building itself or it could have been that there were squatters inside.”

The fire was largely under control at the time of Conlin’s comments with firefighters on the roof cutting holes in order to vent the heated gases out of the structure. Given the late hour, a more thorough investigation into a cause for the fire is expected to be carried out in the morning. However, due to the extent of the damage, any evidence may be inconclusive.

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