Apartment fire in James Bay displaces residents in 71-suite building

Apartment fire in James Bay displaces residents in 71-suite building

UPDATE: Residents of the units not directly affected by the fire are now able to return to their homes. The fire destroyed a third-floor unit and the building also suffered water damage. There were concerns over the possible exposure of asbestos following the fire but testing has shown there are no air quality issues in the building. 

Several crews tackled a fire that broke out at an apartment building in the 400 block of Superior Street Tuesday evening.

Seventeen firefighters responded to multiple 911 calls just before 6 p.m reporting smoke and flames showing from a unit on the third floor of the four-storey building at 443 Superior near Menzies.

Saanich Fire was also put on stand by.

Residents in the 71-unit building were forced out as firefighters tackled the flames.

“We arrived, there was a lot of fire, a lot of smoke, ” said Victoria Fire Department Battalion Chief Wayne Moody. 

“Our first engine knocked it down from the outside, and then transitioned to an interior attack.”

It appears fire damage was limited to one or two units while others were affected by smoke and water.

“The fire had actually lapped onto the fourth suite and was going inside to that suite, ” said Moody,

“The guys knocked it down before it got too far.” 

No one was believed to have inside the unit where the fire began but one person was treated for smoke inhalation.

The Evacuee Assistance Unit was on scene to help residents of all 71-units who learned they won’t be able to return home Tuesday night. 

One resident says the Fire Department gave the all clear but building management wants further tests to be done. 

All suites were evacuated by the building’s owner as tests continue for asbestos contamination. Tenants have been told results are expected by Wednesday evening. 

There are no estimates as to the cost of the damage to the building estimated to be worth more than $7 million. 

The cause of the fire is under investigation

Credit: Dizzy Wizard/Twitter

More to come

Alexa HuffmanAlexa Huffman

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