Canada Day barn fire keeps three Island crews busy

Oyster River, Campbell River and Courtenay fire departments all respond to incident

Fire crews had a busy Canada Day as three departments responded to a barn fire near Oyster River.

The initial call came in to the Oyster River Fire Department at around 11:30 on July 1. Crews responded to a structure fire on Macaulay Road in Oyster River. When they arrived, three barns were already on fire, with a fourth in danger of catching.

“En route, dispatch told us that there’d been multiple calls, so we knew it was a big structure fire,” said Oyster River department chief Bruce Green. “Driving up the road to the fire we could see the big columns of smoke there. When the deputy chief got on scene, he quickly determined that the barns that were already involved, we weren’t going to be able to salvage them, so we were going to make a stand and save the last barn that was still standing.”

Campbell River and Courtenay fire departments were also called for mutual aid. The barns were far from any hydrant, and the two other departments brought tankers and engines to help support the Oyster River team. Even with the extra help, it was a long day for those on the scene.

“In total there were about 45 fire fighters on scene throughout the day, and we were there until 7 o’clock at night to put it out,” Green said.

Campbell River Fire Chief Thomas Doherty said that his crew was on scene until 5:30, and that they supplied one tanker truck and one engine.

“Our engine crew was assigned to assist in suppression efforts immediately when they arrived and our water tender shuttled water from a nearby hydrant to the scene,” he said.

No injuries to humans or animals were reported.

“Fortunately it was mainly a hay operation and there were only four cows that were close to the barns and they all got out fine,” Green said.

However, the hay inside the barns combined with the dry and windy conditions on July 1 caused the blaze to spread rapidly.

“It sounds like they were using a skid steer to put hay into the barn, and a bale that was already in there fell off and landed on the hot exhaust pipe of the skid steer,” Green explained. “Then there was wind that day going in the direction of the barns and they caused it to spread rapidly. And because the barns are old and there’s dust and stuff on the 2x4s… it’s an open structure right, and it just runs.”

RCMP were on scene as well helping direct traffic around the incident.



marc.kitteringham@campbellrivermirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

fireNews

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

 

Fire fighters work to extinguish the blaze that burnt down multiple structures on an Oyster River hay farm on July 1. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department

A fire in Oyster River had already engulfed a number of structures after crews arrived on scene. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department

Crews work on extinguishing multiple structures near Oyster River on July 1. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department

Campbell River Fire Department was on scene at Oyster River giving mutual aid on July 1, 2020. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department

Just Posted

Good Food Boxes are packed in Gold River to go out to people of that community. Greenways is working on expanding the program to other communities including Campbell River. Photo supplied by Greenways Land Trust
Good Food Box program coming to Campbell River

Greenways’ program will provide food delivery to six communities in Strathcona area

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: Vancouver Island in a January spike while B.C. cases decrease

Island’s top doc Dr. Stanwick breaks down the Island’s rising numbers

Eden Robinson will be ‘on hand’ for a special online screening of Monkey Beach, based on her 2000 novel, presented by the Museum at Campbell River through the Tidemark Theatre Feb. 4. Photo by Bluetree Photography
Museum at Campbell River to screen Monkey Beach and Q&A with Eden Robinson

Last year’s Haig-Brown Writer-in-Residence’s work has skyrocketed to justifiable fame in the past year

Tahsis mayor Martin Davis stands with an old-growth tree in McKelvie Creek Valley. The village of Tahsis signed a Letter of Understanding with forestry company Western Forest Products to establish McKelvie watershed as a protected area. Photo courtesy, TJ Watt.
Landmark deal expected to protect Tahsis watershed from logging

Tahsis and WFP agree on letter of understanding to preserve McKelvie Creek Valley within TFL 19

Sawyer, a northern saw-whet owl that became synonymous with Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society, passed away peacefully over the weekend. Sawyer would make numerous public appearances with MARS staff in and around the Comox Valley and Campbell River. Photo supplied.
Popular MARS ambassador owl dies

Submitted MARS Wildlife Rescue has lost one of its mightiest ambassadors. Tiny… Continue reading

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

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

Shown is Quality Foods at 319 Island Highway in Parksville. The Island-based grocery chain announced on Jan. 25 it made a $2-per-hour pay premium, implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic, permanent. (Mandy Moraes photo)
COVID-19: Quality Foods makes $2-per-hour employee pay premium permanent

Island-based grocery chain had extended increase twice in 2020

A Cessna 170 airplane similar to the one pictured above is reported to be missing off the waters between Victoria and Washington State. Twitter photo/USCG
Canadian, American rescue crews searching for missing aircraft in waters near Victoria

The search is centered around the waters northeast of Port Angeles

The North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP have arrested a prolific offender who is now facing more than 40 charges. (Black Press file photo)
‘Priority offender’ arrested in Cowichan Valley faces more than 40 charges

Tyler Elrix, 37, had a history of evading police; was ordered not to be in Vancouver Island

Jonathon Muzychka and Dean Reber are wanted on Canada-wide warrants. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Convicted killer, robber at large after failing to return to facility: Victoria police

Dean Reber, 60, and Jonathon Muzychka, 43, may be together

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens during a postelection news conference in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
30% of B.C. recovery benefit applications held up in manual review

The province says 150 staff have been reassigned to help with manually reviewing applications

Adam Dergazarian, bottom center, pays his respect for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, in front of a mural painted by artist Louie Sloe Palsino, Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Kobe Bryant’s presence remains strong a year after his death

Tuesday marks the grim anniversary of the crash that took their lives

Surrey RCMP are investigating after a pedestrian was struck and killed at 183 Street and Highway 10 Friday night. (File photo)

Most Read