Structure fire closes Highway 3 near Keremeos, B.C., officials investigating

Click to play video: 'Mobile home fire closes Highway 3 near Keremeos, B.C.'
Mobile home fire closes Highway 3 near Keremeos, B.C.
Mobile home fire closes Highway 3 near Keremeos, B.C – Jan 8, 2020

At around 9 p.m. Tuesday night, the Keremeos Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to a fire at a mobile home.

The fire was a few kilometres west of Keremeos, on Highway 3.

“We rolled everybody that we had here, which was about 20 members,” said Brian Helm, deputy fire chief with the Keremeos Volunteer Fire Department.

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The mobile home was located on a shoulder of Highway 3, which forced firefighters to stop traffic on the route for several hours.

“It was mainly for the safety of our members,” said Helm. “[The fire] was located on a blind corner.”
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According to the Keremeos Fire Department, they were having their weekly training session just before the call came in, allowing for a quick response time.

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“Tuesday night is our regular practice night, so we had just completed our session before the call came in,” said Helm.

The firefighters were able to contain the fire to one structure despite being in close proximity to a 100-year-old house, 60 feet away.

“I’m glad nobody got hurt. I’m glad the firemen were here quickly and got things under control,” Gordie Reedman, owner of the empty mobile home, told Global News on Wednesday.

“Especially before the fire got next door.”

Click to play video: 'Penticton firefighters save man from burning motel room'
Penticton firefighters save man from burning motel room

An excavator was brought in to knock down the rest of the home, in order to ensure the fire was completely extinguished.

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Reedman says it is not the first time that he’s dealt with a structure fire, as another home of his on the same property caught fire in 2015.

The mobile home had been abandoned for a few years and Reedman says he suspects squatters had been using the mobile home on and off.

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At this point, the cause of the fire is unknown and is currently under investigation.

Keremeos is around 45 kilometres southwest of Penticton.

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