Volunteer fire departments from Extension and North Oyster were called to battle a fully involved house fire south of Nanaimo yesterday afternoon.
The alarm was sounded at about 4:30 p.m. Thursday, April 13, about a house that was burning in the 2000 block of Scannel Road in Extension.
Firefighters arrived to find the structure fully engulfed in flame. One person, a male resident of the home, was checked over for smoke inhalation at the scene by B.C. Ambulance Service paramedics and then sent to hospital for further treatment, said Extension Volunteer Fire Department chief Kevin Young.
Two cats were also reportedly not accounted for.
Nanaimo RCMP and B.C. Hydro also responded to control traffic and cut power to the structure, which was heavily damaged by the intense blaze. Sixteen firefighters with three fire trucks battled the blaze with water monitors and foam fire suppression units to prevent the fire from spreading to neighbouring residences.
Young said the fire departments were fortunate to have a hydrant close by to plug into which provided a steady water supply to the fire in the house he estimated was several decades old.
Fire crews were on scene overnight and into Friday morning knocking down flare-ups in the remains of the structure.
“It was a pretty stubborn fire,” Young said. “There was a lot of debris and combustibles in there … materials and flammables and that sort of stuff.”
Small explosions were heard as the fire tore through the house.
“We believe those were propane cylinders going off,” Young said. “There were quite a few 20 pounders and 30 pounders in and around the house.”
Young said the cause of the fire has not been determined, but it appears to have started in the home’s kitchen and then “moved forward” through the house.
Emergency Social Services was alerted to help three people, Young said.
There were no injuries to any emergency personnel on the scene.
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