April 26, 2018 4:03 pm
Updated: April 26, 2018 6:17 pm

Vancouver driver ruptures fire hose as firefighters battle 3-alarm flames

A three-alarm fire broke out at Metropolitan Fine Printers on East Pender around 10 p.m. last night. As Jen Palma reports, a large number of combustible materials inside the building made the fire very difficult to fight.

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As Vancouver firefighters battled the flames of a 3-alarm fire Thursday morning, a car at the scene drove over the fire hose that was supplying water to fire crews.

“Driving over a fire hose is dangerous and illegal,” said Capt. Jonathan Gormick with Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services.

“It puts the firefighters who are working at the scene at risk because if the hose breaks or ruptures in any way like it did today, it can interrupt the flow of water to teams that are in the building, and that’s their lifeline.”

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Firefighters then blocked the car to prevent the driver from leaving until police arrived.

Gormick said this is not the first time this has happened, noting a firefighter was hurt a few months ago after a driver did the same thing.

“A driver drove through fire line tape, snagged a fire hose and then dragged it with the car. That dragged fire hose knocked a firefighter on the scene off his feet and he was injured badly enough he’s still not back at work.”

READ MORE: Firefighter hurt after suspected impaired driver plows through scene on DTES

That firefighter is still going through therapy, Gormick said.

He said there’s also a danger to the drivers going over the hoses, noting they carry large amounts of water under high pressure.

“When they burst there’s a lot of energy that could injure a person or injure anyone who’s near the burst,” Gormick said.

He said police will determine what charges may be suitable for the driver.

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