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December 8, 2013 at 10:30 AM

Redmond firefighter hurt when water-soaked ceiling collapses

A ceiling collapsed on five Redmond firefighters Saturday as they were working to divert a water leak from an apartment complex. One firefighter was injured and transported to Evergreen Hospital. He has since been released.

Firefighters had responded to several water-related calls due to frozen pipes thawing Saturday, and one group was working in the third-floor master bedroom in a building at The Heights at Bear Creek complex off of Avondale Road Northeast when the entire plaster-board ceiling collapsed onto the crew.

After uncovering themselves from the debris, four of the firefighters found one crew member was still buried due to injuries to his left shoulder and leg.

The injured firefighter was evacuated from the building, then evaluated and treated by Redmond firefighters and paramedics  before being taken to Evergreen Hospital, according to a news release.

“Initially we thought his injuries were a lot worse because the pain he was in – he had trouble moving his arm and leg,” Capt. Rob Torrey of the Redmond Fire Department said Sunday morning. “The X-rays were negative for breaks, but it sounds like they’ll do some follow up testing to check for tissue damage.”

Torrey expects Sunday will be another busy day for the firefighters with below-freezing temperatures in the early morning, warming throughout the afternoon. To help, he said, people should locate all water shut off valves for appliances and water fixtures.

“If people can find their water shut offs, they are going to prevent a lot of damage to their property,” he said.

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