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Blaze engulfs vacant Silver Creek residence

A bystander took this photo of a New Year
A bystander took this photo of a New Year's Eve blaze on Campbell Road in Silver Creek.
— image credit: photo contributed

A fire that destroyed a home on Campbell Road in Silver Creek has been deemed suspicious and handed over to RCMP for further investigation.

Columbia Shuswap Regional District Fire Services co-ordinator Kenn Mount says Silver Creek volunteer firefighters responded to the 7 p.m. call New Year's Eve within nine minutes, finding the vacant home fully engulfed when they arrived on scene.

"We did find out it was an empty single-level with basement structure and the property is for sale," he added. "We are deeming it very suspicious in nature since there were no utilities or power to the structure."

No one was injured in the blaze.

Salmon Arm RCMP also responded to the Campbell Road fire.

"The previous owner has advised police that she had attended to that place and had used an open flame assist her in seeing in the darkness,"said Staff Sgt. Kevin Keane in a Jan. 3 statement. "Police investigation is continuing."

Mount meanwhile, says the positive news is that several people witnessed the fire and "a lot of video and photo evidence" has been handed over to police.

"The observations are good regarding the type of fire; we can figure out the area of origin but don't know the ignition sequence," he says, noting neighbours had heard people at the home prior to the fire.

Mount was pleased with the way Silver Creek Fire Department Capt. Jason Phillips and the 14 volunteer firefighters worked the fire with no need for support from other departments.

"They had good manpower, all things considered, with it being New Year's Eve," said Mount, who responded to the code three (lights and sirens) from Salmon Arm. "When I arrived there at 7:30, I was able to go into investigative work."

Firefighters were on-scene until 11 p.m.

"They missed their New Year's party so I was able to feed them Panago pizza and get them back to their families and friends," said Mount, who rang in 2014 while driving back to Salmon Arm.

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