A strong wind and rain storm on Sunday morning sent a tree crashing through a home outside of Maple Valley.
At 7:15 a.m. on Sunday, Feb. 23, Puget Sound Fire units were dispatched with King County Medic One to an aid call for a tree that had fallen into a house and trapped the reporting party in the 22200 block of 196 Ave SE in unincorporated King County and Fire District 43, according to a Puget Sound Fire press release.
“Just prior to that a strong weather system blew through the area knocking out power and damaging power lines and trees,” the press release stated. “A resident of the area stated he saw the storm blow across the lake prior to the tree falling.”
The first crews to arrive found the patient trapped under a large tree that fell through the middle of a six-unit, two-story apartment building. The tree was through the second story and had pinned a man in his 60s who had been sleeping on his couch in the living room.
The patient was conscious and pinned across the torso area. Due to the nature of the call and the complexity of the extrication a Zone 3, South King County, rescue response was requested to bring specialized equipment and trained technicians to the incident. Seattle Fire Department was also requested to provide additional rescue resources.
The patient was treated in place while the tree and structure were stabilized. The patient was able to be extricated from underneath the tree and was transported by Medic One in critical but stable condition approximately 40 minutes after the initial dispatch, the press release stated.
“Unique incidents like this require a large response to gather the resources necessary,” the press release stated. “Multiple agencies respond together to provide the best response to the community. In this incident, a total of 14 units responded including Puget Sound Fire, South King Fire and Rescue, King County Fire District 2, Seattle Fire, King County Medic One, and Zone 3 fire rehab.”
The property manager is working with a tree removal service and a clean-up company to secure the building. The remaining residents have been temporarily displaced. All the tenants have renter’s insurance and are working with their insurance company for assistance, the press release stated.
“This is a reminder that we may still experience some severe weather,” the press release stated. “Be prepared with supplies to make it through. It is also a good reminder of the value of having renter’s insurance to assist when you are impacted by a significant event and your dwelling is compromised.”