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West Kelowna garage fire could have become wildfire if area wasn't prepared

A large plume of black smoke immediately told firefighters to page a second alarm.
July 14, 2016 - 6:50 AM

WEST KELOWNA - A garage burst into flames late Wednesday afternoon and could have become a greater concern in a heavily forested area nearby if not for recent fuel reduction efforts, firefighters say.

West Kelowna Fire Rescue was called at 5:30 p.m. to Lenz Road in Pinewoods Villa but when crews saw billowing black smoke rising in the sky they paged another alarm. When on scene, they found the garage in flames threatening two nearby homes and fire already pushed into the bush, assistant fire chief Brent Watson says.

One crew attacked the garage and got it down before it melted any more siding on the neighbouring homes. Meanwhile another crew hit the grass fire in the forested area and watched for hot spots. 

"Fortunately, the area recently had been cleaned up of dead branches and other forest debris, according to “Firesmart” wildfire prevention principles," Watson says. "This had the desired effect of keeping the fire spread into the forested area to a minimum."

The fire is under investigation but does not appear suspicious.

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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016
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