Gas line breaks during blaze, keeps Keremeos crews busy for 11 hours

Firefighters had to evacuate from this structure fire when a wall collapsed and ruptured a natural gas line in this Jan. 21, 2017 fire in Cawston.
Image Credit: Keremeos Volunteer Fire Department

CAWSTON – A ruptured gas line may be to blame for the long hours Keremeos firefighters put in on Saturday.

No crew members were injured in yesterday's blaze that took firefighters 11 hours to take down.

Firefighters responded to the fire in Cawston at approximately 4 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 21, according to a release from the Keremeos Volunteer Fire Department.

The release says the building was engulfed in flames when the first engine arrived. Ten firefighters from Keremeos were on scene and a request was sent to Osoyoos for five more.

During the operation, a wall collapsed on a natural gas line. All firefighters had to evacuate until a specialized crew from FortisBC Kelowna arrived.

Local contractor Dutchies Transfer helped crews dissemble the building with an excavator, so firefighters could extinguish what was left of the fire.

- This story was updated at 1:50 p.m. on Jan. 22, 2017 to clarify that there were no crew injuries reported by the Keremeos Volunteer Fire Department.

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