On Tuesday afternoon the Missoula Fire Department responded to a fire reported at the Pattee Creek Market on Southwest Higgins.

KGVO News spoke to Fire Department Inspector Jamie Porter about the fire and the response.

The Missoula City Fire Department Responded to the Pattee Creek Market

“Yesterday (Tuesday) around 2:20 p.m. the fire department responded to Pattee Creek Market for a complaint of smoke and fire seen in a dumpster that was right outside the store,” began Porter. “The Pattee Creek Market is in the process of having a new roof installed, and so the contractor brought in a couple of construction-size dumpsters that they had been using any part of this process.”

Porter said the fire appeared to be accidental in nature.

“Preliminarily, I'm going to call it accidental,” she said. “I'm just still trying to figure out what the actual ignition source was. I think it's most probable that it was a cigarette, just because of the nature of the roof membrane that they're removing from the market and then that dumpster. Just those construction components would actually do very well with cigarettes, and there were so many different signs of cigarettes and smoking practices in that area.”

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Porter said the fire did some slight damage near the roofline at the rear of the building.

“The dumpster that was sitting right next to it that is where the bulk of the fire was,” she said. “Now as fire grows, you know that heat goes up as part of the convection aspect. And the heat eventually does impinge on the side of the building there and the roofline. Now fortunately, again, they are in the process of replacing that roof, and so I believe most of the damage or any of the damage that was done to the store is going to be replaced anyway.”

After the first response, it was determined that more assistance was required at the site, and fortunately, Fire Station Number Three was just a few blocks away.

“Well, as we were in route, we actually did get updates from 9-1-1 that the dumpsters were right next to the building and that the structure was threatened at that point and we went to a full structure response,” she said. “Since the normal adequate apparatus which includes our ladder trucks and additional fire engines, the battalion chief, our safety officer, which includes our ambulance, we actually bring our own ambulance for any type of rehab that we need.”

Porter said the entire scene was cleared within about 90 minutes, and no injuries were reported.

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