UPDATE: Residential complex fire started by smoking materials

A fire at 500 Lester Road has left six tenants in two units homeless.

KELOWNA - Kelowna firefighters were quick to put out a fire in a townhouse complex on Lester Road, but at least six tenants will have to find somewhere else to stay tonight.

Kelowna Fire Department Platoon Capt. Eric Simpson said two units at 500 Lester Road were badly burned and nearly got into the roof shared by up to 10 units. The fire was called in around 7:30 p.m. and was out an hour later. But not before causing roughly $350,000 in damage.

The fire originated on a 2nd floor deck and spread into the attic space. Although not conclusive, Simpson said the probable cause of the fire is smoking materials.

"It looked like the fire started in unit 14 on the back deck on the delta side of the building and travelled into the attic," Simpson says. Both unit 14 and 13 were badly damaged, some of that water damage from fire crews having to knock out the flames from inside the building.

Three engines, two ladder trucks, an ambulance and roughly 17 firefighters were called to the scene. No injuries were reported.

In July, two major apartment fires left dozens homeless. The first was started by someone smoking. The other one was started by a barbecue on the deck.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Julie Whittet at jwhittet@infotelnews.ca or call (250)718-0428.

Residents wait outside their building while fire crews ensure all hot spots are out.
Residents wait outside their building while fire crews ensure all hot spots are out.

— Story updated at 10:25 a.m. Aug. 7, 2013 to include cause of fire

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