OLYMPIA, Wash. -- A fire that started in a shrub spread to the Quality Inn in Olympia overnight, and because there were no sprinklers in the building, firefighters had a hard time getting it under control.
The 80 people displaced by the fire have since been relocated. Fire officials say 50 of them are part of Olympia’s mitigation program and were housed here. They were moved to the Governor Hotel in Olympia. Thirty others were helped by the Red Cross.
Firefighters said had there been sprinklers, the fire would have been contained to one or two rooms and out in about 30 minutes. Instead, the fire spread through the attic and hidden spaces around the hotel, outrunning crews and forcing them to fight the fire from the exterior.
The 2 alarm fire prompted multiple agencies to respond. Fire engines consistently dumping 2,000 gallons of water onto the roof for hours to knock down the fire.
Thick black smoke poured from the building, with firefighters advising people in the area to keep windows closed as they anticipate fighting this fire into the later morning hours.
Fire investigators are on scene and are assessing damages and trying to determine how the shrub ignited in the first place.