London fire department says ‘hoarding’ added extra challenge in south end fire

Fire crews battle a blaze along Millbank Drive in the early morning hours of Sept. 10, 2019.
Fire crews battle a blaze along Millbank Drive in the early morning hours of Sept. 10, 2019. Andrew Graham / 980 CFPL

The Ontario Fire Marshal’s Office is investigating following a blaze in a south end neighbourhood Tuesday morning.

London fire department district chief Scott Turnbull told 980 CFPL the job of suppressing the flames was made more difficult because of a hoarding situation.

Firefighters were called to 204 Millbank Drive, between Stanhope Crescent and Shaftsbury Avenue, shortly before 4:30 a.m.

District Fire Chief Jeff Collins told 980 CFPL they were first dispatched to reports of a car fire on the property, but when they arrived on scene they found three vehicles in a blaze with flames spreading to the second floor of the home.

Collins confirmed all of the residents made it out of the home safely, including the family’s two pet dogs and rabbit. A family member told 980 CFPL News one person was transported to hospital as a precaution and Collins confirmed they were being examined.

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Hours after crews were first called to the blaze, Turnbull explained some of the added challenges in fighting the fire.

“The conditions as far as the hoarding did make our job much more difficult,” Turnbull said.

“The condition of the home and things around it made our job from a fire suppression, firefighting part more arduous. Definitely a safety issue for the fire crews.”

There were no reports of injuries to any of the firefighters who responded to the blaze.

What caused the blaze remains under investigation and the initial estimate pegs damage at $300,000. A neighbouring home also suffered some exterior damage in the incident.

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– With files from 980 CFPL’s Andrew Graham, Jess Brady, and Jacquelyn LeBel.