Vernon resident forced out by early morning house fire | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Vernon resident forced out by early morning house fire

A home and garage were gutted by fire Dec. 27, 2017.
Image Credit: Tony Heisterkamp
December 27, 2017 - 11:38 AM

VERNON - Alert neighbours banged on the door of a Vernon man’s home early this morning to warn him that his house was on fire.

The blaze broke out today around 5:30 a.m. at a property on Highway 97, across from Vernon Jubilee Hospital. Deputy Vernon Fire Chief Scott Hemstad says the lone occupant evacuated the home thanks to neighbours prior to the department’s arrival. He got out unhurt. 

When firefighters arrived, flames had already engulfed the garage and spread to the attached home.

“They’re both a total loss,” Hemstad says of the home and garage.

There was also some damage to a neighbour’s garage, but crews were able to keep the blaze from spreading any further.

Firefighters were challenged by cold weather conditions, which brought icy conditions.

“There were some slips and falls with firefighters,” Hemstad says. “The property is located on a slope so that was a bit of an extra challenge.”

He says the age of the home also made things challenging because the walls and ceiling were constructed out of lumber.

“It’s much more labour intensive getting into all those spaces,” he says. “Modern structures are much easier.”

Investigators were able to determine that the fire originated in the garage, but have not yet been able to pinpoint an exact cause. That could be tough, Hemstad says, because there isn’t much left of the garage.

— This story was updated at 2:25 p.m. Dec. 27, 2017 to change the main photo. 

To contact a reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston or call 250-309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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