Fire crews from Langford, Colwood and View Royal attended a townhouse fire on Arncote Avenue on Saturday evening, where the owner’s cat died and a firefighter was injured.
Langford Fire Chief Chris Aubrey said crews received multiple 911 calls around 5:15 p.m. and were able to bring the blaze under control in about 15 minutes.
“It was right next to station number one so as soon as the crew started to react they could see the smoke straight away and just a quick turn towards Arncote and they saw visible flame so they are immediately went to a second alarm,” Aubrey said. “They were very aggressive hitting the fire from the outside. Obviously our biggest concern was getting it to spread to the rest of the townhouse complex. , so they lit the fire from outside.
“There was no one home at the time, so they had to break into the front door and fight to the second floor to put out the fire.”
Crews stayed on site for two hours to pick up items for the family and clean up.
Aubrey says the crews found a cat inside and attempted CPR, but unfortunately were unsuccessful.
“The family is very upset and it’s obviously quite heartbreaking for them,” Aubrey said. “And we tried pretty hard, it was probably 20 minutes of CPR we were doing on the cat to try and get him back but unfortunately we couldn’t get him back.”
Colwood Fire assistant fire chief Greg Chow said a Colwood firefighter suffered a lower extremity injury and will be off work indefinitely.
“The member was transported to VGH by BC EHS, and has since been released and is resting,” Chow said. “We are still awaiting assessments from the doctor, so unknown at this time in terms of the extent of the injury, but he is currently resting and continuing for treatment and investigation.”
Aubrey says the firefighter tripped and fell which is how he got the injury.
All three floors of the townhouse suffered damage, according to Aubrey. The second floor suffered fire damage, the third floor suffered smoke and heat damage, and the ground floor suffered water damage due to efforts to extinguish the fire.
He estimates the townhouse suffered $100,000 in damage and the cause of the fire has yet to be determined.
The investigation into the causes of the fire will begin on Monday.
Aubrey says it’s a good reminder to check to make sure the smoke alarms are working properly.
“That’s probably one of the reasons people were alerted to the fire,” Aubrey said. “So it’s always important to have working smoke detectors.”
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