Thick grey smoke could be seen billowing into the air in Brackendale, signalling to residents of Squamish that someone’s house was on fire.
Layton Pears, 11, was one of the first to notice the smoke coming from a home down the street on Bracken Park Way as he was about to bring his dog inside. When the young Squamish resident saw smoke coming from a home on the other side of his street he knew help was needed.
“I asked my mom to call 911,” said Pears.
A number of people had noticed the smoke and made calls to 911 at about 5:45 p.m. on Saturday. Pears said at first only smoke was coming out of the home then flames started to show.
Squamish Fire Rescue responded with two pumper trucks and a rescue van and an ambulance also arrived along with RCMP members. The surprised homeowners also arrived to discover their house was on fire.
Firefighters connected a hose to a fire hydrant at the end of the street and attacked the blaze with at least two water lines. Over the course of an hour, persistent flames flared up as grey smoke mingled with brown and yellow fumes.
Firefighters worked for about an hour to tame the fire on the usually quiet street in Squamish. Once the flames were reduced, firefighters with air packs on their backs took hoses into the home to ensure no hot spots remained.
Fire Chief Russ Inouye said one firefighter suffered minor injuries related to a fall. He confirmed no other homes or buildings in the neighbourhood were impacted by the fire.
“We’re currently in the mop up stages of it and we’re interviewing witnesses,” said Inouye at 6:50 p.m.
The homeowners watched helplessly as flames licked out from under the roofline of their house. Neighbours comforted the couple and their dogs as the emergency crews worked to put out the flames.
Inouye met with the couple and confirmed that their home was insured.
An investigation of where the fire started and what caused it is underway, said Inouye.
The fire in Squamish follows an early morning fire in Whistler on May 4 that left 16 people homeless when their rental home on Mountainview Drive was destroyed.
Check back for more details as they become available.