Sun Peaks Fire Rescue (SPRF) were called to a house fire in Whitecroft Village around 3 p.m. yesterday afternoon. Although it’s not uncommon for municipalities to respond to fires in areas that extend beyond their boundaries, SPRF do not usually attend to fires in the Whitecroft area.
“We’ve gone from high to moderate (fire danger) and we were concerned that this fire could spread and directly affect Sun Peaks and that’s reason we went down that far,” explained Sun Peaks firefighter Capt. Colin Cannon.
Cannon said he spoke with CEO Rob Bremner of Sun Peaks Municipality about the risks involved in (this type of fire), and it was determined there could be a substantial risk to Sun Peaks if the fire grew from one house to the next and into a forest fire with Sun Peaks being at the top of the forest.
“I was given permission to send a truck and a crew down to confine the fire to the house of origin,” said Cannon. “Captain Harrison was the incident commander, he took a crew of five other firefighters down . . . with Engine 3 and they successfully contained the house fire to just the house.”
Due to the quick action of Sun Peaks Fire Rescue, no other homes were damaged during the fire.
“There were ambers that had landed on other roofs . . . and it had already started burning log piles beside the house . . . so we made the right move,” said Cannon.
There were no occupants in the home at the time of the fire, one dog suffered from smoke inhalation and has since recovered. Reports of other missing pets are still unconfirmed.
Whitecroft resident Tarrah Clements who lives nearby to the affected home was extremely grateful for the support of Sun Peaks Fire Rescue.
“We are a tight knit community here for one another, as homeowners in Whitecroft we feel as though we are part of Sun Peaks. SPFR was very quick to respond and contain something in which potentially could have devastated a lot of families,” said Clements.
“Living in an unprotected area we understand the greater risk and pay for that in our home insurance. It would be wonderful if in the weeks to come the discussion of fire protection . . . be revisited, even if that requires families here to support it financially or in a volunteer respect.”
The proposition for a volunteer fire service covering the Whitecroft and Heffley Lakes area has been visited in the past and was rejected in September, 2011. Future talks between SPFR and the TNRD regarding fire protection in the area are expected to take place sometime next month.
The occupants of the Whitecroft property did not have renters insurance and have lost all their possessions in the fire. Donations for the couple can be dropped off at the Burfield Lodge Monday to Friday between 8 a.m. and 4.30 pm.m or at Masa’s Bar and Grill.