Tom Carstens, a firefighter with Applegate Valley Fire District No. 9, sprays down a hot spot after crews stopped a shop fire that began at about 10:30 a.m. Tuesday in the 17000 block of Highway 238. - Jamie Lusch

Fire destroys shop, chars residence

APPLEGATE — Crews stopped a fire that destroyed a shop and spread to a mobile home before it did major interior damage to the house just before noon Tuesday in the 17000 block of Highway 238 in the Applegate Valley.

Alvin Woodriff, who was in the shop, suffered minor burns to his leg. No one else was injured, said Brett Fillis, Applegate Valley Fire District No. 9 fire chief. Woodriff refused to be transported in an ambulance but left with his daughter to seek medical attention, said Chris Wolfard, operations chief with District 9.

The fire started whenWoodriff, 97, began burning household garbage in a woodstove in the shop, Fillis said. Something in the garbage exploded and the flames blew the stove doors open and burned Woodriff's leg befoe spreading rapidly through the shop and attached bedroom and bathroom. The fire was accidental, Fillis said.

The call to dispatch came in at 10:24 a.m. Fillis arrived on the scene at 10:29 a.m. to find the garage engulfed in flames. The blaze moved to a few trees in the area and to the double-wide manufactured home on the property.

Fillis said crews extinguished flames that had reached the house before stopping the fire in the shop. There was burn damage along the eaves of the home and some insulation and boards had caught fire, but the inside of the home sustained only smoke damage. The flames caused a metal awning above a patio outside the south side of the home to collapse.

Fillis said the collapsed roof shielded the home from more damage and prevented flames from spreading to cans of gasoline nearby.

It took about a half hour to contain the fire, Fillis said. About 25 firefighters from District 9, Williams and Rural/Metro responded to the alarm, and Oregon Department of Forestry crews were staged to prevent any embers from starting spot fires.

Inside the destroyed shop was a vintage car and common tools and shop equipment. There was also a unique item: a meteor Woodriff found in Brookings 70 years ago.

"He's looking forward to digging that out. It's probably still in pretty good shape," Fillis said.

Reach intern Stacey Barchenger at 776-4464 or e-mail her at

See a video of fire crews working.

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