A dramatic fire near West Richland on Thursday afternoon sent up a plume of smoke that was visible for miles.
No one was hurt but the blaze destroyed an unoccupied two-story home at 1818 Riverside Drive being used for storage. Capt. Paul Carlyle of Benton County Fire District 4 said the owner, who lives next door, was working on a motorcycle there when it misfired and ignited the blaze.
The Richland Fire District, Benton Fire District 2 and West Benton Fire and Rescue also responded , which was first reported at about 3:40 in an unincorporated neighborhood of Benton County between the Yakima River and the West Richland city limits. It was largely extinguished by 5:30, according to Commissioner A.J. Hill of Benton Fire District 4.
There are no fire hydrants in the neighborhood, so the fire departments hauled in water to fight the fire.
“They were very fast and professional,” said neighbor Daniel Strom.
Hill said having to bring in water is a little unusual in a residential area but is a common firefighting approach in wild fires.
Carlyle estimated the loss of the house at about $150,000. There was little in the structure since no one was living there, he said.