CALGARY – An Airdrie man forced from his home on Wednesday after it caught fire thinks the blaze was intentionally set.
The fire in the 200 block of Silver Springs Way broke out at around 11:30 p.m.
Homeowner Shaun, who didn’t want to give his last name, said he woke up when his retriever Molson jumped on him, alerting him to blaring smoke alarms.
“The dog’s the one that saved me… I wouldn’t have woken up,” Shaun said.
“When I woke up, it was like it was a dream or whatever because you couldn’t see anything. It was all dark.”
Shaun stumbled around blindly trying to find his clothes and the keys to his van. He managed to grab all four of the family dogs and get out of the home.
“It was black, like having a blindfold on,” he said.
“It smelled like burning plastic and tasted like burning plastic.”
Firefighters were able to extinguish the fire and said no one was injured, but the house sustained significant damage.
Shaun was the only one at home at the time of the fire. He lives there with his wife and two daughters, ages three and six, who were on vacation at the time of the blaze.
“I guess we’ve got to find another place to live while this gets fixed.”
Shaun said he had to tell his daughters over the phone that their hamsters died in the fire.
The cause of the fire is under investigation, and although RCMP haven’t confirmed arson was involved, Shaun believes the destructive fire was purposely set, potentially by firebombs.
“We found bottles that were on fire in the grass. Obviously it wasn’t an accident.”
Shaun said Wednesday’s house fire comes after a series of small fires along the back fence over the past six weeks.
“We’ve had two separate grass fires prior to this, one not even a week ago.”
Shaun said he’s “still in shock” and wondering “why someone would do it.”
The investigation has been turned over to Airdrie RCMP.
Anyone with information on the fire is asked to call the Airdrie RCMP at 403-945-7200 or contact Crime Stoppers.