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Firefighter hospitalized after crews battle Oak Bay house fire in record-breaking heat

All occupants escaped safely before fire crews arrived
Oak Bay firefighters remained on scene Tuesday morning while the house was inspected after Monday night’s fire. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)

No occupants were injured after a house fire in Oak Bay on Monday evening, but the response during the extreme heat sent one firefighter to the hospital.

Oak Bay Fire Chief Darren Hughes told Black Press Media that working to put out the fire in the record high heat caused one firefighter to be hospitalized. The firefighter has since been released “with a clean bill of health,” the chief said.

The fire was accidental and caused by barbeque briquettes that were disposed of in a combustible container near the side of the home, Hughes said. The fire caused extensive damage to the top floor and attic space of the home, but all occupants escaped safely.

“They were all out when our crews arrived,” Hughes said.

The hospitalized firefighter likely faced a “high level of exhaustion” due to being in full turnout gear for a long period of time, he added, coupled with the high temperature and working conditions.

Oak Bay, Saanich and Victoria fire departments responded to the blaze, and brought the fire under control quickly.

In a pair of Tweets, Saanich Fire Department called it “extremely demanding work” in the heat, while Oak Bay Fire thanked B.C. Ambulance Services for keeping them hydrated throughout.

READ: Saanich Peninsula farmers face significant crop losses due to excessive heat

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