The Ucluelet Volunteer Fire Brigade responded to a residential fire at Amphitrite Place on July 28. (Andrew Bailey photo)

Ucluelet fire crew extinguishes residential blaze

Ucluelet’s fire chief is praising his crew for making short work of a residential blaze on Tuesday.

Ucluelet’s fire chief is praising his crew for making short work of a residential blaze on Tuesday.

“It was a real good turnout which was amazing…I can’t express how amazed I was at the turnout and the quick job they did to go in, find the fire and knock it down,” Ucluelet Volunteer Fire Brigade chief Rick Geddes told the Westerly News. “I was actually overjoyed with the response. Given that it was the middle of the day, when most of my members are at work and it’s the middle of summer and tourist season…I was overwhelmed with how many turned out. We had every piece of apparatus there and just about every active member was able to get there. That really reassured my comfort level as to how safe we are in this town with this group.”

Geddes said a resident reported smoke coming from a residential neighbourhood in the south-end of town around 12:50 p.m.

He was the first to arrive on scene and, while no flames were visible, a bystander was hosing down the back wall of the residence, which had smoke billowing from it.

He said his first priority was finding out whether anybody was inside the home.

“The doors were all locked, so we had to break the front door to get in and do a search to make sure nobody was in there,” he said. “I went in and did a search of the top floor and nobody was there, but it was too smokey for me to go downstairs.”

He said volunteer firefighters began arriving in short order and were able to suit up and conduct search of the bottom floor.

“They went downstairs and made clear that nobody was in there and then the next priority was to find the fire,” he said.

He said the source of the fire was found to be inside the back wall of the house and the most likely cause was an electrical wiring malfunction.

He said that whenever a structure fire is reported in either Tofino or Ucluelet, both town’s fire crew automatically get paged to respond, but prior to Tofino arriving at the scene, 15 members of the Ucluelet Volunteer Fire brigade had shown up.

“I was able to stand Tofino down before they got here because I had enough resources at that point,” he said.

He said the fire took several hours to fully extinguish and caused significant damage.

“The house is uninhabitable right now until it’s repaired. The whole back wall of the house basically needs to be replaced,” he said.

He added the area was secured with help from Ucluelet’s public works department and the home’s Vancouver-based owners were alerted to the situation.

He said the crew had a lull in activity through the spring and early summer due to the coronavirus pandemic and consequential shut down of tourism, but calls have increased as the town has reopened.

“As the tourists started coming back and things started opening up, we’re sort of back to what I would say is normal for this time of year. It’s been pretty busy for the past couple of weeks with a variety of different types of calls,” he said. “That will dwindle down when the busy summer season wraps up.”



andrew.bailey@westerlynews.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

READ MORE: Ucluelet hires first full-time fire chief

READ MORE: Ucluelet Volunteer Fire Brigade names Firefighter of the Year

READ MORE: Fire destroys Ucluelet First Nation home

fireuclueletVolunteer

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The candidates for the Mid Island-Pacific Rim riding in the 2020 provincial election. Clockwise from top left: Rob Clarke, Graham Hughes, Evan Jolicoeur, Helen Poon and Josie Osborne. Osborne was declared the winner on Saturday night. (Photos submitted )
POLL QUESTION: Are you happy with the results of B.C.’s provincial election?

Josie Osborne of the BC NDP and Tofino’s now-former mayor won the Mid Island - Pacific Rim seat.

Ucluelet RCMP detachment. (Westerly file photo)
Driver facing charges after crashing into pedestrian at Ucluelet crosswalk

“It’s a reminder to slow down and pay attention,” said Sgt. Steve Mancini.

Josie Osborne and her campaign team watch the results roll in during B.C.’s provincial election on Saturday night. (Photo courtesy of Josie Osborne)
Tofino expected to wait until New Year to elect new mayor after Josie Osborne wins provincial seat

Josie Osborne is the West Coast’s new MLA and that means Tofino needs a new mayor.

Dylan Hillis preparing collagen samples from ancient dog bones at the UBC musuem of Anthropology. Photo: Eric Guiry
Ancient ‘woolly dog’ ate mostly fish, new University of Victoria study finds

Study gives researchers better understanding of human-dog relationships on Tsehaht First Nation

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps by 287, another senior home outbreak

Two more deaths recorded, community outbreak in Okanagan

MMFN First Nation has said that it will restrict access to portion of Highway 28 that passes through the Nation’s land until a road use agreement is reached. (Black Press file photo)
Vancouver Island First Nation blocks highway access to logging trucks in Gold River

Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation restricting access for Western Forest Products pending road deal

An untitled Emily Carr painting of Finlayson Point was donated to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria by brothers Ian and Andrew Burchett. The painting had been in their family for several decades. (Courtesy of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria)
Never before seen painting by famed B.C. artist Emily Carr gifted to Victoria gallery

Painting among several donated to Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
Rescued bald eagle that came to life in B.C. man’s car had lead poisoning

Bird is on medication and recovering in rehab centre

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The B.C. Centre for Disease control is telling people to keep an eye out for the poisonous death cap mushroom, which thrives in fall weather conditions. (Paul Kroeger/BCCDC)
Highly poisonous death cap mushroom discovered in Comox

This marks first discovery on Vancouver Island outside Greater Victoria area

Janet Austin, lieutenant governor of B.C., was presented with the first poppy of the Royal Canadian Legion’s 2020 Poppy Campaign on Wednesday. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)
PHOTOS: B.C. Lieutenant Governor receives first poppy to kick off 2020 campaign

Janet Austin ‘honour and a privileged’ to receive the poppy

Cowichan Search and Rescue set up near the Silver Bridge in Duncan on Wednesday morning, Oct. 28, 2020 to rescue a dog from the Cowichan River. (Citizen file)
Cowichan Search and Rescue save dog from icy Cowichan River

Search and Rescue’s swiftwater team was called in

Most Read