Ilwaco residents told to stay indoors

Firefighters retreat from disastrous Ilwaco fire


January 25, 2024

Ilwaco residents were advised to stay indoors with doors and windows closed as possibly hazardous smoke boiled from an industrial fire on the waterfront.

As the fire consumed the large wooden dock at the former Ilwaco Landing facility now owned by a Bellingham company, witnesses heard the tires on workers' vehicles explode in the flames. A forlorn car horn sounded for a while.

All workers were safely evacuated. Triage responders on the scene were treating exhausted Ilwaco and Long Beach firefighters, as a fresher crew from Pacific County Fire District No. 3 joined the fight.

Fire crews and bystanders were attempting to push some surviving crab pots into the water to save what they could.

The warehouse portion of the facility appears likely to be the last major structure to be destroyed — only a matter of time, according to observers.

At about 1:45 p.m. only a couple crews remained battling the fire down below Robert Gray Drive, with all others gathering on the road above. The two remaining hoses that were engaged were viewed as only slowing the now inevitable destruction of the entire facility, which is expected to collapse into the water.

At 2:07 p.m., portions of the structure could be heard falling into water. The metal skeleton of a shipping container was the only remaining visible portion of the offloading facility through the smoke. The wooden dock was rapidly burning down to the pilings as of 2:10 p.m.


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