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Rash of fires hits Central Kitsap area

Central Kitsap Fire and Rescue crews were busy this weekend extinguishing brush fires, two of which occurred in the same neighborhood.

The largest incident occurred about 7 p.m. Sunday in a wooded area between two housing developments (Cascade Terrace and Hidden Valley).

According to witnesses, two 13-year old boys Michael Wiler and Michael Welch called 911 after smelling smoke and finding the fire.

Crews from Central Kitsap Fire and Rescue and Puget Sound Federal Fire Department attacked the fire from NW Whisper Street off Discovery Loop.

Crews had to force their way through thick brush to reach the blaze that was about 250 feet into the woods.

“We are lucky a resident called this one in,” said CKFR Battalion Chief Randy Billick. “It could have been a lot worse had it been left to smolder all night.”

Billick is investigating the cause of the fire, which was believed to be caused by humans, although fire officials were not calling it arson at presstime.

An unrelated fire began at about 6:30 p.m. Saturday near Enchantment Road in Hidden Valley when a group of teenagers apparently discarded ashes from a barbecue.

The kids according to CKFR reports went home for dinner then returned to the area to see a fire had ignited. They ran to the closest home to call 911.

Two more fires were reported over the weekend, one of which occurred Sunday, Sept. 22 near the Camp Union Grocery Store on Holly Road.

Strong winds and dry grass caused the fire to spread to a 50-foot square area near a propane tank. CKFR officials said the fire was human caused and anyone with information should contact Billick at 447-3550.

The store’s owner reported to Kitsap County sheriff’s officers that two boys described to be 12-13 years old came into the store and purchased lighters minutes before the fire started.

The fourth fire, a stump blaze near the Safeway Store on Highway 303 north of Bremerton was extinguished at about 4:30 a.m. Monday Sept. 23.

It is believed a discarded cigarette butt caused that fire.

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