A fire ripped through four unoccupied buildings at a construction site in Sooke, dramatically lighting up the sky, but officials say it could have been much worse if not for the bravery of local fire crews.
Over 30 firefighters and 10 response vehicles were called out to a structure fire just before 9 p.m. Tuesday on Steeple Chase.
Fire crews from Otter Point, Metchosin, and East Sooke all showed up to help battle the blaze.
The fire was under control by 9 p.m. Crews remained on scene Wednesday morning, monitoring for hot spots and flare-ups.
No one was injured, and the cause of the fire is unknown. Authorities are actively investigating the fire, and a spokesperson from the RCMP has said that the cause of the fire is not being treated as suspicious.
“The quick action of our emergency response teams prevented something that could have been a truly catastrophic event,” said Sooke Mayor Maja Tait.
“Thank you doesn’t seem to suffice. My heartfelt gratitude goes out to our first responders including Sooke Fire and our mutual aid partners, Sooke RCMP and BC Ambulance and your families.”
One resident said the blaze lit up the night sky. “I saw this beautiful glow on the houses across the street, [I was] thinking wow, what a sunset and stepped out to the street to turn and look at what I thought was a gorgeous west coast sunset only to see this huge fire,” said Irene Morden, a nearby resident.
“The heat was intense. My neighbour and I hosed down our yards a bit because of the heat and the embers falling. Thank goodness there wasn’t a big wind,” she added.
The back side of the neighbouring houses near the fire sustained some damage, with broken windows and melted soffits.
A few residents were briefly evacuated from their residences Wednesday night, with some reporting to CHEK News that they could feel the heat from the blaze inside their homes.
The city says that those experiencing property damage should contact their insurance providers.
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