Food truck damaged by heat and smoke

No one was injured in a flameless fire that melted the interior of a food truck Monday night.

No one was injured in a flameless fire that melted the interior of a food truck Monday night, according to South Whidbey Fire/EMS.

An eagle-eyed WhidbeyHealth ambulance crew noticed smoke coming from the roof of the trailer on Howard Road around 9:21 p.m. on Feb. 19. The members of the crew also discovered that the exterior walls of the food truck, known as Geri’s Snack Shack, felt warm to the touch.

“If it wasn’t for them, we probably would have lost it,” said Geri Downey, who owns the business with her husband, Mike.

High temperatures from cooking equipment that was still running caused heat and smoke damage inside the trailer, but no flames were seen, according to South Whidbey Fire/EMS Deputy Chief Terry Ney. Firefighters discovered that the stove had been left on. The scene was cleared around 10:38 p.m.

Although the food truck is insured, a friend has started a GoFundMe to provide income for Geri and her employees until the Snack Shack is back up and operating. As of Friday, the campaign has raised $1,370. To donate, visit

Geri speculated that the ambulance crew spotted something was amiss in the dark because they might be patrons of the food truck, which attracts many South Whidbey workers on their lunch breaks.

“That’s just dumb luck that they were looking,” she said.

After a long career with Nichols Brothers Boat Builders, she decided to open Geri’s Snack Shack in 2022. She and Mike have lived in the Bayview area for several years and only recently moved to Greenbank.

The fire melted the AC unit off the wall, as well as items on the shelves and in plastic containers. The heat inside was so intense that it broke the glass on her business license.

Accidents happen, she said, and she’s glad no one was around to get hurt at the time of the incident.

She hopes to reopen Geri’s Snack Shack within a month. The food truck has dutifully served the community during past crises, such as a days-long power outage a few years ago caused by a powerful windstorm.

“It’s just a little hole in the wall, but it’s a good business,” she said.