A family in Cassidy is without a home after it was destroyed by fire Wednesday.
The fire broke out about 6:30 a.m. and quickly spread through the single-storey house at located in the 3000 block of Angus Road, near Nanaimo Airport, and was possibly caused by a malfunction in a wood stove that sparked the fire when a woman opened the wood stove.
“She opened the door and the chimney was blocked or something and it blew back,” said Ron Gueulette, Cranberry Volunteer Fire Department chief. “She tried to put it out with an extinguisher, but it didn’t work.”
Firefighters at the scene said the house was fully ablaze when they arrived.
Two women escaped uninjured, as did 14 dogs, including nine puppies, that were in the house at the time. Two cats were unaccounted for as of about 10 a.m.
“We managed to save the puppies and the dogs, so it was a good morning that way,” Gueulette said. “We had a little bit of trouble finding the last one, but we finally found her and got her out of there.”
Neighbours turned out to assist the family and take care of the dogs.
Homeowner Jeff Boomhower said the house is insured and the family had accommodations offered to them.
Gueulette said the house would likely be torn down due to the extent of the damage.