UPDATE: Rescue response on 54th SW

(WSB photos)

4:08 PM: Big Seattle Fire “rescue” response is arriving in the 4000 block of 54th SW between Charlestown and Genesee Hills. We’re on the way to find out more.

4:17 PM: Via scanner, this is a special operation to get someone in need of medical assistance out of a house described as a possible “hoarder situation.” They are planning to evacuate the person from an upper floor of the house.

4:39 PM: The woman has been removed from the house. Some of the units at the scene are being dismissed.

4:43 PM: Our crew has talked with an SFD supervisor on scene. The patient is a 65-year-old woman with “various medical issues,” and they confirm she’s been successfully taken out of the house, via a window and ladder, sliding a special gurney down the ladder.

They also confirm that a “hoarding situation” inside the house made the passageways too narrow to bring her out any other way. She’ll be taken to Harborview Medical Center.

33 Replies to "UPDATE: Rescue response on 54th SW"

  • sc February 19, 2017 (4:13 pm)

    As of 3:39 PM 16 units have responded according to Seattle Fire Real-Time 911.

    • WSB February 19, 2017 (4:20 pm)

      Yes, it’s a rescue response. Remember that all units dispatched at one point will show until the last unit has canceled, regardless of whether some have canceled along the way. Our crew has just arrived too.

  • G Man February 19, 2017 (4:17 pm)

    Just saw all the ambulances go by from 47th and genesse

  • John February 19, 2017 (4:19 pm)

    Just watched a fire truck labeled “Marine Emergency Response” zoom past, multiple fire engines, and more Fire Marshall/Incident Commander trucks (at least 4) go past than I knew were local. Hope everyone is okay.

  • JanS February 19, 2017 (4:21 pm)

    I used to live a block from there. Rescue rope seemed surprising , since there’s no hill,  it’s all a flat street. It’s a 3 story house “skinny”…wonder if it’s a roof rescue.

    • JanS February 19, 2017 (4:22 pm)

      just saw the update…

  • Gorillita February 19, 2017 (4:37 pm)

    I keep hitting “refresh” hoping for more details or pics.  

    • WSB February 19, 2017 (4:39 pm)

      Sorry, nothing new to report. They’re working to get the woman out. They’re in a yard that I don’t believe is entirely in public view.

      • WSB February 19, 2017 (4:39 pm)

        …. and now “patient extricated.”

  • OMA February 19, 2017 (4:46 pm)

    I live on her block.

    It’s sad really.   She fell in her house about a week ago and doesn’t want to leave her house.

    We couldn’t give her very much help because you couldn’t get to her.

    My understanding is that one of the neighbors called 911.

    She will now get the help she needs.

    • AJP February 19, 2017 (9:39 pm)

      It’s heartening to hear the community reached out and did what they could. 

  • JoB February 19, 2017 (5:23 pm)

    very sad…

  • Alki Resident February 19, 2017 (5:38 pm)

    Is there any way our community can come together and get this lady’s house in shape so she can live at home safely?

  • Hope February 19, 2017 (6:16 pm)

    I hope she gets all of the help she needs, not just medical.  My grandfather started hoarding after being shot while on duty (he was a cop) and forced into retirement.  It’s a really devastating illness that affects everyone around the sufferer, not just the person who lives with the hoard.

  • Just February 19, 2017 (6:16 pm)

    I was informed that there are a lot of cats in the house and that she’ll likely not make it back anytime soon if at all. If anyone is looking to adopt I’m sure these cats will be available at the humane society within a month.

  • Colette February 19, 2017 (6:54 pm)

    This is so sad.  My mother was a hoarder, refused to leave her house, there were frequent calls to 911, etc.  We finally got her into assisted living, where she died not long after.  It’s a very difficult situation for family and neighbors.  I hope the lady will be OK.  Thanks to the people who tried to help her.

  • sc February 19, 2017 (7:10 pm)

    Thank you Seattle Fire Department.  

    It’s not always a fire.

  • LyndaB February 19, 2017 (9:51 pm)

    Thank you good neighbors and first SFD.   I hope she will be ok.

  • pamela February 19, 2017 (10:01 pm)

    Well now that she is safe, let us now focus on the cats! Are they still stuck inside or all the windows open and the cats are running around?  Has Seattle animal shelter been alerted to this situation?

    Neighbors:  have you seen kittens?  Seattle animal shelter will not be doing anything tomorrow as it is a holiday. 

    I just want to make sure the cats are safe, so if the neighbors would like some help or if they know of any family please give them my number 206-427-6454


    feraltrapping @gmail.com

    • Annaeileen February 19, 2017 (10:30 pm)

      I too worry about the cats now that the resident is out. Pamela I know you can help but I too would like to know if there is anything else can be done. Donations? 

  • Lghost February 19, 2017 (10:27 pm)

    I am very glad that the lady is okay I actually live on 53rd and they went into my backyard to get her out 

    • Seabruce February 20, 2017 (7:03 pm)

      I was going to say the picture looks like 53rd. Hope all are ok.

  • Alki Resident February 19, 2017 (10:56 pm)

    Kitty Harbor might be able to help or at least guide you to the right people. I imagine it’ll be hard to trap the cats since there’s a ton of hiding spots in the house being she was a hoarder. I unfortunately know first hand about stuff like this, sigh.

  • elle nell February 19, 2017 (11:03 pm)

    This is very sad on many levels…glad she has gotten help for now. She has chosen to live this way and while most of us know this is extremely unsafe, unhealthy and all the other bad outcomes, this is her life.. tread softly, care-FULLy, and slowly for she is a human that deserves to make her own way. who are we to judge…

  • Donna February 20, 2017 (4:45 am)

    This is not a life choice any more than bipolar disorder or depression or panic attacks are life choices.  Hoarding, if that is what it is, is an obsessive compulsive disorder. Mental health conditions, regardless of triggers, are not life choices. Yes, it is important to tread carefully and not simply rush in and clear out all the items ((cats are a different matter). Is there a friend or family member with a release of information who can work with the woman and the hospital social worker? Since the hospital is aware now of the situation they will be involving their mental health staff.  Cleaning the house should be done in a partnership with the woman and her mental health team (I don’t mean with the woman actively present as it sounds like that could be a long while). The cats need immediate care, but the rest of the house can wait a little while until the plan is developed.  Although I don’t know her and therefore can not give a definitive diagnosis of hoarding, I am willing to be part of the process of neighborhood help.

    • JB February 24, 2017 (10:42 pm)

      She has no one to help her. She is back at home.  The cats are her family. She is still in need of help. 

  • WS Lifer February 20, 2017 (5:56 am)

    Loving post from Elle Nell.  Tread softly, and carefully.  She has family and friends who love her. Hopefully with this recent emergency they can assist her in getting the help she needs.  

  • pamela February 20, 2017 (8:08 am)

    kitty harbor is closed, they were bought out by emerald city pet and well they don’t do this kind of stuff.

    Since this is Seattle animal shelter issue, they have to be involved legally.  They won’t trap, hence that is where I would come in but the cats by LAW have to go shelter.  

    So I won’t need donations just help from the neighbors so I am not working today and hopefully some one will call me and I can come check out the situation.   Otherwise these cats are not being fed, and will be running in the streets and will get hit. 



  • Marianne February 20, 2017 (9:25 am)

    Pamela is correct.  This is an issue that falls under the care and control of the Seattle Animal Shelter.  The cats are owned so will need to be caught/trapped and brought to SAS where they will get care until their future is decided.

    In the meantime I hope the cats have food and water.  I too, worry about them possibly being trapped in the house without access to both.

    Hopefully there are some neighbors who care enough to contact Pamela, who has graciously offered to take time out of her day to go over and check out the situation.

  • Denice February 20, 2017 (11:03 am)

    I volunteer at a cat shelter called Whisker City located in Shoreline.   If someone can give me the number of cats that are there and a break down by whether they are kittens or cats I can contact the person who runs it and see if we can take some.  Unfortunately, we just took in 11 kittens from a hoarding situation down south on Saturday.    Purrfect Pals might also be able to take some cats.  However, if I remember correctly from their web page, they also recently took some cats from a  hoarding situation.    Links to their web pages are below.






  • Anne February 20, 2017 (11:51 am)

    The two cats who live there were rescued yesterday and are safely in a shelter.

    • Marianne February 20, 2017 (1:02 pm)

      Thank you Anne, that is great to know.  Did they go to the shelter or did family take them?

    • Marianne February 20, 2017 (1:51 pm)

      Whoops, guess I should have read more closely.  That is wonderful that the cats are safe at the shelter.

Sorry, comment time is over.