A fire Sunday night caused $250,000 worth of damage to a private preschool and the adjoining residence in the Bridle Trails neighborhood. The woman who owns and lives in the house got out with her granddaughter's help just before firefighters arrived.
Bellevue and Redmond firefighters raced to the house, on the 3000 block of 140th Avenue Northeast, within four minutes of the homeowner calling 911 to report smoke filling her room, then hanging up abruptly on dispatchers.
Firefighters arrived at 6:24 p.m., expecting the worst. Instead, both the woman and her granddaughter were transported to Overlake Hospital. No one else was in the house. The preschool, located on the first floor, sustained water and smoke damage and was closed Monday to the 80 students who attended.
Dozens of firefighters fought to bring the blaze under control in 32 minutes. Fire damage was contained to the second story.
Bridle Trails School staff worked through the night to leave messages for the families of each student. Still, families arrived to drop their children off Monday morning, as investigators worked the scene.
The homeowner and her granddaughter were released from the hospital Sunday evening. No firefighters were injured.
Investigators have determined that the blaze originated in the upstairs bedroom, but had not determined the cause as of Monday afternoon.
"We would like to get up and running as quickly as possible," said Karen Miller, a Bridle school employee and the owner/occupant's daughter. The school is looking at several options, including portable classrooms and using unaffected structures on the property.
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