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Evacuation order lifted for NE Portland residents affected by scrap-yard fire

Tires burn at a Northeast Portland scrap yard Monday. The smoke from the fire forced thousands of people to evacuate because of the poor air quality. (Photo: Chopper 2/KATU)

Officials have completely lifted an evacuation order for a neighborhood in Northeast Portland after a massive scrap-yard fire destroyed a duplex and a six-plex Monday.

The EPA has been testing and monitoring the air quality all day Tuesday, and the levels stabilized in the afternoon. The evacuation order was lifted just before 5 p.m.

It included homes between NE 72nd Avenue and 76th Avenue, from Killingsworth to Alberta. A secondary evacuation was lifted late Monday evening, which extended out to NE 60th Avenue.

The cause of the massive fire, which started around 9 a.m. Monday at NE 76th and Killingsworth, remains unknown. Investigators hope to look into the cause in the coming days.

"Because of that strong east wind the fire was driven very quickly in to the bulk of the pile," said Louisa Jones with the Portland Fire Bureau. "That is not believed to be the ignition point."

No one was injured, but 16 cats perished in the fire and several dogs were saved.

Residents who live in the evacuation zones were asked to clean inside their homes if they left windows open, and throw away any food that may have been left out.

If you live in the area and have questions, call 211.

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