The investigation into a Sunday fire that damaged a Sidney house continues as new details emerge, including reports of a dog being rescued from the house.
Mike Harman, deputy chief of the Sidney Volunteer Fire Department Tuesday, said investigators have ruled out that the fire is suspicious. This said, the cause of the fire as well as the full monetary value of the damage remains undetermined as of Tuesday.
Quick response(5 minutes from page to water on the fire)from our in hall crew resulted in a quick knock down of a residential house fire today.Thanks @dns_fire @CSaanichFire @SidneyRCMP @BC_EHS @PEMOESS for your assistance, great team effort today. #yyjnews #sidney #inittogether
— SidneyVFire (@SidneyVFire) March 1, 2021
The house in the 10000-block of Siddall Road — unoccupied when crews arrived — suffered extensive damage Sunday afternoon with the fire spreading from the exterior deck to the soffits and roof. A cat living in the house died, while a dog survived.
“It’s my understanding that somebody may have passed the home and let the dog out,” said Harman.
Sidney Volunteer Fire Department Chief Brett Mikkelsen said Sunday that the permanent presence of crews at the Community Safety Building prevented worse damage to the house. “Actually, that was the primary difference,” he added later.
This video courtesy of Clayton Frith shows the response to a fire in Sunday afternoon near Mills Road in Sidney as crews from @sidneyvf @CSaanichFire and @dns_fire extinguished a blaze that caused extensive damage and killed a cat but could have been worse. pic.twitter.com/u6u8eJ8t5K
— Peninsula News (@PeninsulaNews) March 1, 2021
Mikkelsen said smoke from the fire appeared visible from five kilometres away.
“It’s probably very safe to assume that there is extensive smoke and fire damage, at least in the kitchen area, upstairs on the second floor,” he said. “And there is going to be some related water damage as well.”
Crews from North Saanich and Central Saanich fire departments helped put out the fire while also providing coverage to Sidney.
Crews kept watch on the site overnight before turning it over to investigators.
The woman residing at the home has since received support.
“I activated the Peninsula Emergency Measures Organization (PEMO) Emergency Support Services (ESS) team,” said Harman. “They responded out Sunday afternoon and between the ESS team and myself, they were able to put her up at a local hotel for three nights and provide her meal vouchers for three days. We were able to get her a gift card to a local business in Sidney to get some clothes for work and get her on her feet in the first couple of days after the fire.
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