Update: Small electrical fire breaks out in uninhabited house on 10th Avenue

A small fire caused by faulty makeshift wiring broke out in the basement of the uninhabited 10th Avenue home on July 30.

A small fire broke out in a house at 10th Avenue and Montrose.

Update: Fire Chief Tim Pley said that the fire was accidental in nature and caused by faulty makeshift wiring.

(Original story below)

Port Alberni Fire Department crews responded to a small fire in an uninhabited house on 10th Avenue this (July 30) afternoon.

“We got in and found no fire in the main floor and found a fire brewing in the basement,” said fire Chief Tim Pley. The house was full of debris and had signs of a rat infestation.

“It appears no one was living there,” said Pley. “It was difficult getting in there with all the debris and stuff in there.

No one was hurt in the blaze.

“We extinguished the fire in the basement and swept the house and found no people and no other fires.”

One of the dangers of uninhabited homes, Pley said, was that fire crews often find more than one fire when they enter.

“Sometimes when we get houses that are unsecured you have to watch out for more than one fire but we’ve found nothing else here.”

Fire prevention officer Randy Thoen said that homes that aren’t inhabited often have their utilities turned off, leading to unconventional and dangerous replacements.

“Typically services aren’t turned on so that’s when people start to use methods that aren’t normal—candles, generators, that sort of thing.

A homemade exhaust system for a generator caused the July 27 house fire on Fourth Avenue when the exhaust pipe overheated and lit the outside wall of the home on fire.

Another danger is that fires in uninhabited homes can also grow and spread unreported.

“If somebody is in the home then the smoke alarm goes off so they notice it and deal with it,” said Pley. “If there’s nobody home that leads to a structure fire.”

Fortunately, Pley said, this fire was reported quickly.

“We got called in really quickly.”

Neighbours said that the house has been uninhabited for years but that they regularly see people coming in and out—possibly squatters.

“They’re not occupied and people vandalize them and vandalism can sometimes lead to arson,” said Pley.

Firefighters will remain on scene to watch over the building and ensure nothing sparks up again.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

twitter.com/alberninews.com

Just Posted

Home care complaints up 45% on Vancouver Island

Number of home care hours delivered down 6%, complaints up 45 %

Alberni group focuses on stigmatization as biggest barrier to opioid crisis

Community session planned to raise dialogue on opioid crisis response

Cherry Creek firefighters mourn former deputy chief

Brian Brick is the second Alberni Valley firefighter to die of work-related cancer in January

Port Alberni to consider the future of McLean Mill

City council will be holding a committee of the whole meeting on Jan. 21

VIDEO: Here’s what the B.C. legislature officers are accused of buying

Personal trips, purchases, alcohol and more laid out in 76-page report by Plecas

Why would the B.C. legislature need a firewood splitter?

First sign of police involvement in investigation of top managers

New Canada Food Guide nixes portion sizes, promotes plant-based proteins

Guide no longer lists milk and dairy products as a distinct food group

Judge annuls hairdresser’s forced marriage to boss’ relative

Woman was told she’d be fired if she didn’t marry boss’s Indian relative so he could immigrate here

Liberals look to make home-buying more affordable for millennials: Morneau

Housing is expected to be a prominent campaign issue ahead of October’s federal election

Cannabis-carrying border crossers could be hit with fines under coming system

Penalties are slated to be in place some time next year

Man accused of threatening to kill ‘as many girls as I see’

Christopher W. Cleary wrote he was angry because he’d never had a girlfriend and wanted to ‘make it right’ with a mass shooting

Canadian talent abound on newly revamped Vancouver Whitecaps squad

Lineup is full of new faces after the organization parted ways with 18 players over the off-season

Most Read