Three buses were destroyed and another damaged after a bus fire at the Mid Island lot on Tzouhalem Road early Friday morning. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)

UPDATED: Five school buses destroyed in suspicious early morning fire

Firefighters and RCMP arrived at the Mid Island Bus lot on Tzouhalem Road early Friday morning to find three buses engulfed in flames.

Two more were damaged beyond repair.

Firefighters from North Cowichan’s South End hall arrived just after 4 a.m. and extinguished the blaze.

Mounties requested a crew again for a flare-up around 7 a.m.

“The tires got going underneath,” explained South End Hall deputy chief Brad Coleman. He and a small crew returned to douse the hot spots while bus drivers arriving for work for the day looked on.

A spokesperson for Mid Island Bus said he company is “deeply saddened” to learn about the fire.

The company provides pick-up and drop-off school bus services for Queen of Angels School and Duncan Christian School.

“Five of our school buses were lost, they were damaged beyond repair,” the spokesperson said in an email. “We are definitely very thankful for the support of the community, the RCMP, and the firefighters who came to extinguish the fires.”

The show will go on, however.

“We are busy at this point working with our schools to ensure all the children continue to get back and forth to school safely,” said the email. “The situation is heartbreaking but we are incredibly grateful that no one was hurt, thankful for the community support and the generous offers of temporary replacement buses from other local schools.”

RCMP detachment commander Insp. Chris Bear said his officers are investigating, calling the blaze suspicious.

“This matter remains under active investigation in determining the cause of the fire,” Bear said. “Police are requesting anyone who may have seen or heard anything to contact the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP detachment.”

Those with information can call 250-748-5522 or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (6477).



sarah.simpson@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Tofino picks two frontrunners for pot shop permits

Retail cannabis in Tofino beginning to shake out as council continues to grind through process.

10th annual Tofino Saltwater Classic embraces catch and release format for Chinook prizes

Fundraising fishing derby has raised over $500,000 for community initiatives since its inception.

Courtenay-Alberni Greens name Sean Wood as federal candidate

Nomination meeting took place June 15 at Hupacasath Hall in Port Alberni

Musings from surfers about surfboards

“I tried to make it so it was easy to get into waves and not too floaty so you could duck dive it.”

Tla-o-qui-aht board fish farms to obtain video footage of pens

Fish farms were boarded under the authority of the Tla-o-qui-aht Hereditary Chief Ray Seitcher.

Air Canada reviewing how crew left sleeping passenger on parked plane

In a Facebook post, the woman said she woke up ‘all alone’ on a ‘cold dark’ aircraft

Canadian communities responding to climate change

New research highlights state of local adaptation planning in Canada

Victoria woman in L.A. hospital after she was run over twice

Lynn Phillips has suffered from multiple broken bones and internal bleeding

‘Text neck’ causing bone spurs to grow from millennials’ skulls, researchers say

Technology use from early childhood causing abnormal bone growths in 41 per cent of young adults

B.C. judge defies lawyers and adds six months to man’s sex assault sentence

‘I find the joint submission is contrary to the public interest and I’m rejecting it’

Tiny Yorkshire terrier survives days on remote B.C. island

ROAM rescue crews, family searched for dog, missing in Greater Victoria for days

Man presumed dead after boat capsizes in Columbia River

Search and rescue efforts recovered a life jacket

Crews fight wildfire along Sea-to-Sky Highway

A cause has not been determined, although a downed power line is suspected

Most Read