Cause of St. Albert seniors’ home fire remains unknown as investigation ends

Click to play video: 'Crews battle large seniors centre fire in north end of St. Albert' Crews battle large seniors centre fire in north end of St. Albert
WATCH (May 7, 2021): A massive fire consumed the Citadel Mews seniors care facility in St. Albert on Thursday night. – May 7, 2021

Nearly three months after a massive fire forced dozens of residents out of their homes at the Citadel Mews West Continuing Care Facility, the exact cause of the blaze remains unconfirmed.

The fire started just before 8 p.m. on May 6 at the seniors’ home located at 15 Erin Ridge Road next to the Sturgeon Community Hospital.

Read more: 3 people taken to hospital after massive fire breaks out at St. Albert seniors residence

Three people were taken to hospital — two were treated for smoke inhalation and one for minor lacerations.

“Our investigation is complete and the results were inconclusive,” City of St Albert spokesperson Alex Cunningham told Global News on Tuesday.

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About a week after the fire, investigators determined it started on a ground-floor patio.

The fire went undetected on the patio, allowing it to grow and spread from patio furniture to the bottom of the deck above the patio, city officials said in a news release.

Read more: ‘It was controlled pandemonium’: St. Albert families praise response to seniors home fire

From there, the fire travelled up the vinyl siding, into the attic and made its way into the roof of the multi-storey building.

Once the fire made its way into the attic, it became difficult to access. High winds at the time of the blaze also didn’t help fire crews.

Read more: Investigation reveals where, but not how fire started at St. Albert seniors residence

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“This was a large and devastating fire, where thankfully no one was seriously hurt,” St. Albert Fire Services acting chief Scott Wilde said on May 14.

“If you live in a multi-family building, be aware of your building’s fire safety plan and practice your escape. A fire safety plan is required for all buildings with a fire alarm system.”

–With files from Caley Ramsay, Global News

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