Cabin burns to ground in the Commonage

Vernon fire chief Keith Green says a wooden cabin in the Commonage burned to the ground Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014. The building was outside of the Vernon and Lake Country fire protection zones. Plus the driveway to the rural cabin was too slippery for a fire crew to drive to the fire safely.

VERNON – The owner of a cabin in the Commonage south of Vernon had to watch the building burn to the ground Saturday night.

The old structure at 147 Commonage Road isn’t part of Vernon’s fire protection area and it’s outside of Lake Country’s fire protection zone.

Despite that, the Vernon Fire Department sent out a pumper truck and a crew of fire fighters just before 11 p.m. when the call came into 911.

Fire Chief Keith Green says they didn’t know if anyone was in the cabin or what the situation was, so he didn’t want to take any chances.

It turns out the old cabin had been burning for hours before the fire department was called and had collapsed. No one was hurt.

Green says as the fire truck made it’s way up the very long and icy driveway off Commonage Road, the truck started to slip off the road.

“Our captain decided it was just to slippery to proceed without damaging the fire truck,” Green says. The crew couldn’t proceed to the fire or return to the hall. They were stuck.

A city of Vernon crew was called out to sand the road so the fire truck could leave.

“There was nothing our crew could have done,” Green says. “They weren’t concerned about any trees catching fire so they just let the wooded cabin, that had been burning for some time, just fizzle out.”

It is up to the Regional District of the North Okanagan to investigate the cause of the fire.

To contact the reporter for this story, email halexander@infotelnews.ca or call 250-491-0331.

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