December 8, 2014 7:39 pm

Increase in Saskatoon garage fires alarming officials

Saskatoon Fire Department says the amount of garage fires has substantially risen compared to last year.

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SASKATOON – It’s only the second week of December and Saskatoon has nearly doubled the amount of garage fires seen over a three-month period last year. Since October, the Saskatoon Fire Department says it’s gone to seven blazes.

In 2013, crews attended four garage fires from October to the end of December.

Estimated damage to property recently has risen to $549,000, compared to $145,000 over the three months last year.

The causes of ignition varied from welding to cooking this year. Most fires started after a resident left their garage and small fires grew into larger ones before anyone noticed from outside.

READ MORE: Detached garage catches fire in Pacific Heights

Typically, garages contain many flammable materials and do not have smoke detectors.

Officials are encouraging residents to be mindful when using heat sources. Anyone who comes across a garage fire is asked not to open the door, since this supplies the blaze with more oxygen, and instead call 911.

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