An RV parked in a residential area of Victoria West was extensively damaged after flames engulfed the vehicle Tuesday morning, sending a plume of smoke into the sky above.
The fire broke out shortly before 7:30 a.m. in the 900-block of Catherine Street, between Langford and Skinner streets, witness Tim McKay tells CHEK News.
McKay, who captured video of the blaze, says firefighters and paramedics were on scene.
“It was very interesting to see. You can actually hear the crackling of the fire in the first clips. I had to get clear for first responders,” he said.
Rob Rutherford, a fire captain with the Victoria Fire Department, says firefighters arrived and mitigated the flames within minutes.
“It was a quick extinguishment,” he told CHEK News. “The first arriving crew was faced with a large RV, approximately 30 feet in length, fully involved. They quickly proceeded to use attack lines to get foam on the RV and extinguish it.”
No one was injured in the fire, according to Rutherford.
“The next priority was making sure no one was inside the RV. They searched, and no one was found,” he said.
BC Emergency Health Services says while paramedics equipped with two ambulances were on scene, no one was treated for injury or transported to hospital.
But things could have turned out much worse.
“There was a propane tank inside the RV,” explained Rutherford. “That, when heated, can potentially cause a BLEVE, which is a boiling liquid expanding vapour explosion.”
Harold Alfred, another witness, says he did hear an explosion, which prompted him to go outside and see the RV on fire. When speaking with CHEK News around 10 a.m., he said a tow truck was on scene to haul the vehicle away.
Amid the aftermath, video footage captured by CHEK News also shows the RV’s windows shattered, both its exterior and interior covered in black soot, and its driver’s seat completely destroyed.
Terri Healy, media relations officer with Victoria Police, says the road was closed for about an hour due to the fire.
Rutherford says VicPD has taken over the investigation, and the cause of the fire is unknown at this time.
“Unfortunately, at this time, we don’t have a cause of the fire,” he added. “The owner has reached out to us and will be speaking with investigators.”
(Top right photo: Tim McKay, top-left and bottom-row photos: CHEK News)