Edmonds police have released additional information regarding the apartment fire in the 7600 block of 230th Street Southwest early Sunday morning.
According to Sgt. Mike Blackburn, Edmonds officers were at the apartment complex on an unrelated unrelated matter when they observed flames coming from another building within the same complex at 3:34 a.m. “Cpl. Mike Richardson along with Officers Earl Yamane, Ryan Speer, Andy Mehl, and Jodi Sackville ran to the apartment to investigate,” Blackburn said. “The officers radioed the 911 dispatch center to request a fire department response and then overheard someone yell that there were people inside the building.”
As the group of officers neared the burning structure, the lights in the building went out. Undeterred, all five officers entered the burning building to awaken and evacuate residents. “As they progressed through the two-story building, going door to door, the officers found it necessary to force their way into two of the apartment units, both still occupied by residents,” Blackburn said. “One of these apartments was ablaze as the officers entered to assist the tenants out.”
Within minutes, two additional Edmonds officers — David Lim and Jason Shier — arrived on scene and directed the fleeing residents away from the building to safety. Edmonds Police Sgt. Jeff Jones coordinated the rescue efforts.
Units from Snohomish County Fire District 1, Lynnwood and Shoreline fire departments also responded to fight the fire.
During the evacuation efforts, officer Jodi Sackville–whom police acknowledged earlier–was caught in an enveloping cloud of smoke and suffered smoke inhalation, Blackburn said. Once all the residents were safely outside the building, Sackville received initial medical attention from paramedics, and Shoreline Medic Unit 63 transported the officer to Harborview Medical Center for additional care. Sackville was released from the hospital shortly after 8 a.m. Sunday morning.
Snohomish County Fire District 1 investigators have concluded that the fire was caused by individuals smoking carelessly on an outdoor balcony.
“Thanks to the quick actions of all the officers involved, the residents of this apartment building were safely removed without any serious injury,” Blackburn added.