RCMP in the North Okanagan are investigating whether cooking marijuana oil led to a house fire.
The home on Pinecrest Road in Westshore Estates just north of Fintry went up in flames at 9a.m. Monday morning.
The North Okanagan Fire Rescue says by the time it arrived on scene, the fire was very intense.
“When we first arrived house was fully engulfed on all sides. The flames were visible and we got water on it immediately,” says Incident Commander John Greenwood.
It was a huge sigh of relief for neighbors who, every summer, are on high alert living in an interface fire zone.
“You have to knock these things down fast. If we had a bit of wind it could have started us an interface fire,” says area resident Dave Robertson.
While the fire was knocked down before it could spread, the story doesn’t end there.
In fact it has a bizarre twist according to one neighbor.
Shelly Parr lives next door to the burned house.
She says her neighbor came over screaming that he was cooking marijuana oil and that it started a fire.
“He was cooking drugs this morning and he came over screaming that that is what he was doing and that the house is on fire,” says Parr.
But it’s what he did next that shocked Parr even more as she watched her frantic neighbor run back to the burning house.
“There was a couch in the doorway on fire and he was trying to pull it out but it was just the fire was growing too fast,” says Parr.
So fast, Parr says the man in his 30’s was burned quite badly.
“The side of his face, one side of his face was all bubbled up, his arms and chest,” says Parr.
Parr says the injured man then jumped in his vehicle and drove off but not before giving her and her family another scare.
“When we went to the driveway my 19 year old daughter was standing there because we were all trying to get into cars and he almost drove over her. He was in so much shock he was so burnt,” says Parr.
Parr is grateful that she and her 6 children and their pets including a budgie are all safe and that their home is still standing but she’s angry that her neighbor put nearby homes and lives at risk.
“Oh I am angry, I am angry. It is dangerous, it’s stupid, this is BC it is dry out. It’s summer, we all have home next door it is not just one person’s place it could blow up,” says Parr.
Police are investigating but so far there is no word on where the injured man ended up or if he sought any medical attention.