UPDATE 12:45 p.m.: RCMP are now investigating the cause of a fire that destroyed two Cache Creek homes in the early morning hours of April 15.
Cst. Ryan Gofic, acting commander of the Ashcroft RCMP detachment, is calling the fire “suspicious in nature”, but says that because there are no witnesses and no suspects, determining the cause of the fire will be difficult.
No one was injured in the blaze.
The Cache Creek Volunteer Fire Department received a callout at 4:20 a.m., according to Cache Creek fire chief Tom Moe. The Ashcroft Volunteer Fire Department was immediately called to provide mutual aid.
Nearly 20 firefighters from the two departments battled the blaze for more than four hours. When firefighters arrived on scene they found one house on Stage Road completely engulfed, and an adjacent house around the corner on Stanley Parke Blvd. also involved. Moe says the fire had reached the south wall of the second house and moved to the roof.
He adds that no other properties were under threat. “The wind was with us, working in our favour.”
The Stage Road property has been empty since being badly damaged in the flooding in Cache Creek on May 23, 2015. A culvert near the property which was supposed to direct water under Stage Road and on to Cache Creek was jammed with debris from nearby Lopez Creek, which is normally dry. The blocked culvert caused an enormous amount of water and dead vegetation to pool beside the house and also cause damage to several nearby properties.
The owner of the property has continued to pay the mortgage and insurance on the house since May 2015, while the property has been the subject of a dispute with the Village of Cache Creek regarding non-maintenance of the nearby culvert. The matter is currently before the courts.
On Oct. 12, 2018 Cache Creek resident Daniel Fahey, who had been reported missing, was found dead inside the Stage Road house. Moe reports that members of the CCVFD subsequently boarded up the doors and windows of the house in order to prevent anyone gaining access.
The other house destroyed in the April 15 blaze belonged to Anie Lim — owner of Anie’s Pizza in Cache Creek — and her husband Ian. Both were home at the time and escaped without injury, although one of the family’s dogs was killed as a result of the fire.
Moe says that there was a good deal of vegetation, including trees and cedar hedges, between the two properties. Sources report that at least one person is alleged to have been squatting in a shed on the Stage Road property, which was adjacent to both the destroyed houses, and that the fire might have started there. The sources add that whoever might have been in the shed left it before the fire took hold.
Anyone with information about the fire is asked to call Ashcroft RCMP at (250) 453-2216. If you wish to remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).
An overnight fire has destroyed two houses in Cache Creek.
The fire started sometime in the early morning hours of April 15. Firefighters from Cache Creek brought the fire under control, but not before it had claimed two homes.
One, on the north side of Stage Road, has been unoccupied since being badly damaged by flooding in 2015. The other, around the corner from it on Stanley Parke Boulevard, was occupied, and belonged to the owner of Anie’s Pizza in Cache Creek.
No one appears to have been injured, but there are reports that a family dog in the house on Stanley Parke Blvd. did not survive.
More to come