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Umpqua Bank was evacuated at around 9:15 Monday morning after smoke began pouring out of the bank’s ATM room on the south side of the building. Firefighters initially tried to track down what was burning. They made numerous wall cuts, inside and out, but then the smoke began pouring out of all four corners of the bank. Firefighters continued to try to find the source, but when the flames shot through the roof at the center of the bank’s roof, firefighters withdrew. At that point the entire bank was engulfed in flames. All firefighters could do was put as much water on the conflagration as they could.
No word on a cause although the State Fire Marshal is enroute from the valley to aid in the investigation. The bank manager said the vault and the safety deposit boxes should have survived the blaze.
Umpqua Bank officials at their headquarters in Portland are meeting at this hour and are expected to have a formal announcement and a set of instructions for Umpqua Bank customers. We will have that announcement shortly. But regardless of what is announced we can tell you now that no one will lose any money. The banks are well insured for these sorts of events. Those who would like to inquire as to their safety deposit boxes they can contact Umpqua Bank at 866-486-7782.
Umpqua Bank officials say they are already arranging to create a temporary bank facility for Newport area customers. No specific time for opening set yet, but they say they’ll notify the media and everyone else as soon as it’s known. They say it won’t be long. They also remind all Umpqua Bank customers that there is another Umpqua Bank branch in Waldport. It is located at 355 NW Alder. Umpqua Bank officials say Waldport has been informed of the fire in Newport and they are standing ready and able to fill in as necessary for the convenience of Umpqua Bank customers in the Newport area. Their phone number is 541-563-7250.
Traffic on Highway 101 southbound was shut down for a time. No injuries.