Fire in Fort Wainwright housing unit

A fire started in a trash can next to a housing unit on Fort Wainwright Sunday night, causing the temporary displacement of the residents in the unit and the one adjacent.

Two families were temporarily displaced Sunday night after a fire started in a trashcan next to a soldier’s home that spread to the house.

The Fort Wainwright Department of Emergency Services received a 911 call at 10:53 p.m. about a structure fire in the end unit of a four-plex on Boysenberry Avenue and dispatched firefighters who arrived on-scene at 10:55 p.m. Because of the temporary unavailability of Fort Wainwright’s ladder truck, mutual aid was requested from the Fairbanks Fire Department.

All residents had already evacuated safely by the time fire crews arrived. Working together, both FWFD and FFD had the fire extinguished by 11:08 p.m. There was significant damage to the end unit and only minor smoke damage to the third unit. No residents or firefighters suffered injuries.

The residents of the two units were displaced for the evening and provided lodging by North Haven Communities. The family in the end unit moved into a new home Monday, while the residents of the third unit will return to their home today after NHC has the minor smoke damage cleaned.

The cause of the fire was improperly discarded ash from a barbecue grill that the resident of the end unit dumped in the trash can a few hours after cooking.

Eve Baker is a public affairs officer with US Army Garrison Alaska, Fort Wainwright. She can be reached at