VIDEO: The city is on track to set a record for the number of homeless encampment fires that have been reported this year, an accomplishment that few people are proud of.
According to city data, the Seattle Fire Department responded to 520 fires in homeless encampments in 2019, a figure that rose to 825 in 2020.
But city fire crews have responded to 738 blazes so far this year, with four-and-a-half months to go until year’s end.
Seattle firefighters were called Thursday morning to battle a blaze at the crowded homeless camp at the busy corner of Dexter Avenue and Mercer Street in South Lake Union.
There were no injuries but the fire destroyed a large tent. The tent’s owner, a man named Shaun who lives at the camp, said the fire was deliberately set.