Capt. Ennis Mond, Nanaimo Fire Rescue fire prevention officer, investigates a house fire on Ney Drive on Friday. Firefighters have determined the blaze started accidentally, but have not publicly released its cause. (CHRIS BUSH/The News Bulletin)

Pet cage lamps spark fire, Nanaimo home destroyed

Two guinea pigs and a pet rabbit died in blaze, no people hurt

Everyone got out safely, but a fire in north Nanaimo has displaced six people.

Nanaimo Fire Rescue was called to the 4900 block of Ney Drive at about 1:45 a.m. Friday morning to find a house fully engulfed in flames.

RELATED: Man suffers burns, dog dies in fire in Nanaimo

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There was a family of four living in the upstairs part of the house and a couple in the downstairs suite, all of them were renters and none had tenants’ insurance, though the homeowner was insured, said Nanaimo Fire Rescue.

Capt. Ennis Mond, head of Nanaimo Fire Rescue’s fire and loss prevention division, said he had determined the fire was started accidentally by two heating lamps that were being used to help keep pets warm in a cage.

“The cause was two heating lamps for pets in cages and that’s as simple as that,” Mond said.

Two guinea pigs and a pet rabbit died in the resulting fire.

He said the home had working smoke alarms that activated and he credited those with helping everyone get out safely.

“The people upstairs, for sure,” Mond said.

Mond said all tenants had either gone to stay with friends and family or were given temporary accommodations through Nanaimo’s emergency social services program.

“None of the tenants are insured,” he said.

Late Friday morning, crews returned to snuff out a hot spot in the roof.



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