Firefighters enter a residence in a housing complex on Gertrude Street on Saturday, July 25, 2020 to check for hot spots after a two-storey unit was discovered full of smoke and flame. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)

Fire damages unit in Port Alberni townhouse complex

One resident treated for smoke inhalation as family escapes blaze

One person was sent to hospital after a fire in a housing complex on Gertrude Street in Port Alberni July 25, 2020.

Fire crews from Port Alberni, Beaver Creek and Sproat Lake responded to a call at about 4:30 p.m. that a unit in a multi-family townhouse complex was burning. “We arrived on scene to heavy smoke and fire showing from one of the units,” Port Alberni Fire Dept. Chief Mike Owens said.

“The duty crew went in an aggressively attacked the fire and managed to keep it to the unit of origin,” he added. “The heaviest fire involvement when we arrived on the scene was on the second floor.”

One person who was in the suite at the time was treated for smoke inhalation; the unit housed a family of four, Owens said.

READ: Six people escape as fire consumes residence in Port Alberni complex

A GoFundMe campaign has been set up for the family that lost “everything” in the fire. The campaign, organized by Stella Peters, is raising funds to replace the items that were lost, including clothing, linens, furniture and food items. The fundraiser can be found at

By 5:30 p.m. the fire was essentially out and crews were mopping up at the site. Traffic was blocked in both directions on Gertrude Street for at least an hour, as there were various fire trucks, ambulances and police cars at the scene. Beaver Creek Volunteer Fire Dept. members had been doing some training in the area, while Sproat Lake VFD members were responding to a first responder call and were heading into their firehall, so they sent a crew to assist as well.

Port Alberni fire crews had just wrapped up putting out a small fire at Dry Creek Park when they were called to the housing complex, Owens said.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

firePort Alberni

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


A firefighter comes down from checking the roof of a housing complex at the north end of Gertrude Street following a fire in one of the units, Saturday, July 25, 2020. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)

Fire Chief Mike Owens is with the Port Alberni Fire Department. (July 25, 2020) (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)

A fundraiser has been started for the family that lost their home in a fire on Saturday, July 25. (PHOTO SUBMITTED)

Just Posted

Volunteer rescuers train for helicopter exits at Alberni Valley Regional Airport

More technical rescues mean Alberni Valley Rescue Squad members must keep up specialized skills

Three active COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island

Since July 24, Central island has had five new cases, North one, South none

Coulson Group makes donation to Alberni Valley Hospice Society

Hospice Society holding raffle to make up for lost revenue during COVID-19

Alf Todd on a mission to fight Parkinson’s disease

Todd and group hope to raise $10,000 riding bikes to Port Alberni

Work begins on mural near Harbour Quay

Mural will depict the creation story of Tseshaht First Nation

Man arrested after stabbing incident at makeshift camp near Vancouver Island mall

RCMP in Parksville report 28-year-old man taken into custody without incident

Canucks ride momentum into NHL playoff series against defending Stanley Cup champs

PREVIEW: Vancouver opens against St. Louis on Wednesday

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

One dead as fish boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

Landlord takes front door, windows after single B.C. mom late with rent

Maple Ridge mom gets help from community generosity and government

42 more people test positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

The province has recorded no new deaths in recent days

Joe Biden selects California Sen. Kamala Harris as running mate

Harris and Biden plan to deliver remarks Wednesday in Wilmington

Lawsuit launched after Florida child handcuffed, booked and briefly jailed

Suit alleges “deliberate indifference” to what should have been handled as a behavioural issue

Most Read