A delivery truck for donations was lost to a fire last night outside of a Salvation Army location in Penticton.

Firefighters were called at around 10:08 p.m. yesterday, Oct. 26, according to deputy fire chief Rob Trousdell. Seven firefighters from two fire stations responded and put out the blaze.

“The guys are good at their job, they were quick to calm the fire down,” he said.

A responding police officer was told by members of the public that explosions could be heard, however those reports were not confirmed, Trousdell said.

A video posted to social media shows flames engulfing the truck.

Al Madsen, community ministries director with the Salvation Army, says the truck the organization uses to pick up groceries is a write-off.

Despite the intensity of the fire, the damage occurred outdoors and the South Main Street store is open this morning.

“The building itself was safe,” he said. “But the fire damaged a fence and the building next door too.”

READ MORE: Penticton Salvation Army one step closer to new location

Madsen said the Salvation Army can’t take a day off because there are people to feed.

“It’s disappointing that it happened but we have to move forward because we still have people to provide for,” he said.

The Salvation Army in Penticton has two trucks, but now the other one – which is normally used for the thrift store – will have to do both jobs.

“Both trucks are normally both pretty busy... the food bank will take priority, so the thrift store will suffer.”

The timing of the fire – less that two months before Christmas – was “incredibly poor,” Madsen said.

“We just have to persevere and have faith in Pentictonites.”

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

– This story was updated at 10:22 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022, to add comment from the deputy fire chief.

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