UPDATE: Fire destroys large section of Quaaout Lodge in Shuswap | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source
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UPDATE: Fire destroys large section of Quaaout Lodge in Shuswap

A fire destroyed a large section of the Quaaout Lodge this morning, May 22, 2022.
Image Credit: Joel Levy

Roughly 50 rooms have been destroyed following a fire at the Quaaout Lodge and Spa this morning.

Joel Levy was staying at the resort this morning as part of a press team with the Toronto Guardian. The fire started shortly after 8 a.m., he said.

"A lot of people are worried about the community and the staff because most of the people staying at this lodge can afford to buy new clothes and insurance will cover any lost items but this lodge is a big part of the community here," he said.

There was a wide range of guests staying at the resort, from golfers to wedding parties. When the alarm went off, a lot of people came out of their rooms in bathrobes and nightgowns, many without their keys and wallets.

"The smoke starting getting worse and worse out of the roof of the building. It was mostly in the hotel portion of the lodge building," Levy said.

Guests were escorted to the Little Shuswap Lake Band's hall, a short walk away from the lodge, he said. The band is organizing hotel rooms as well as providing water and food for guests.

An RCMP officer told Levy everyone was accounted for and pets all made it outside of the building.

An entire section of the lodge is gone, with roughly 40 to 50 rooms completely destroyed, he said.

The Skwlax Fire Department and Chase Fire Departments remain on scene this afternoon.

Chase fire chief Brian Lauzon said the fire is believed to have started in the attic adjacent to the reception area but the cause is unknown at this time until an investigation is conducted. Firefighters will be on scene for the remainder of the day and are still spraying the site with water.

"We had thought fire had crept through into the next area where the rooms are closer to the lake and we thought we had gained control of it and smoke started showing in that second section and they just lost it... we're just rotating crews back and forth right now," he said.

They received the call to assist the Skwlax Fire Department at 8:30 a.m. By the time crews arrived, the roof had already collapsed and crews tried to keep the flames from consuming more of the lodge.

"That hotel and golf course is enjoyed by many residents in the Central region in B.C. here so it will have a big impact to the area," Lauzon said. 

The Chase Fire Department responded with four members and a firetruck along with the Skwlax Fire Department, so roughly 20 firefighters were on scene. He said no injuries were reported.

 

The Skwlax Fire Department and Little Shuswap Lake Band could not be immediately reached for comment.

The resort is called the "pride of the Little Shuswap Band," according to the lodge's website and is located on Little Shuswap Lake.

Kim Coltman, founder of Fashion Speaks International, was scheduled to hold the 2022 Indigenous Voices in Fashion at the lodge in June but now says it's all up in the air.

"It's one of the only Indigenous owned resorts in the area," she said. "I'm just flabbergasted this has happened and I'm glad everyone got out OK."

- This story was updated at 2:18 p.m. to include a comment from the fire chief.

- This story was updated at 12:15 p.m. to include a comment from Levy.

- This story was updated at 11:33 a.m. to include a comment from Coltman.


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