An abandoned home was destroyed by flames on Monday in a fire deemed suspicious by authorities in Campbell River.
Heavy smoke and flames were coming from the back of the two-storey house at 666 8th Ave. when Fire Chief Thomas Doherty arrived. He said firefighters were dispatched at 2:46 p.m.
The entire house was soon involved in the fire, which spread to the grass. Firefighters knocked down the fire from outside and extinguished the grass fire to keep the blaze from spreading to other properties.
The home was vacant, and there are reports of homeless people frequenting the property and using the building for shelter, Doherty said. There are no reports of injuries.
“The cause of the fire is suspicious in nature and has been handed over to the RCMP for investigation,” he said.
On Tuesday morning, the property was cordoned off with yellow police tape and police were on-scene. The home appeared completely gutted by flames.
At the scene of yesterday’s house fire on 8th Ave. The home is gutted. RCMP is on-site. More to come. pic.twitter.com/9MzRn2CxTh— David Gordon Koch (@davidgordonkoch) June 25, 2019
Police released a statement on Tuesday saying they responded to the incident with the Campbell River Fire Department around 3 p.m.
The statement said the home “had been unoccupied for a significant amount of time, but there were recent reports of squatters coming and going from the home.”
Police were on-scene throughout the night to keep watch on the property, and fire investigators were planning to visit the scene Tuesday, according to the statement.
Police are asking anyone with information to contact the Campbell River RCMP. If witnesses wish to remain anonymous they can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.