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Vacant building fire in Ranchero marks second Shuswap blaze in 12 hours

Crews battle the blaze for almost 24 hours as building became structurally unsound

Ranchero/Deep Creek Fire Department responded to a fire at a vacant building off of Highway 97B, the second fire Columbia-Shuswap departments dealt with within 12 hours.

The building at 5827 Mellor Frontage Rd. has had many occupants, including the restaurant, Thai on the Fly, but was sitting empty and unoccupied at the time of the fire, said Ranchero/Deep Creek Fire Chief Marvin Gros.

The call came in around 1:15 a.m., Tuesday, Feb. 7, and Gros confirmed the building was fully engulfed in flames when crews arrived. No one was on the property and the cause of the fire is still being investigated.

Crews finished at the site around 12 noon Tuesday, marking an almost 12-hour day.

The front of the building was burning, Gros said, and some walls were still standing which made further investigation and firefighting investigation unsafe as the walls could be structurally unsound.

“It was hard to get at stuff, the building kind of fell in on itself, so it’s hard to get a fire out when it’s on top of itself,” said Gros.

As well, there is a basement underneath the building that firefighters couldn’t safely access, Gros said, noting the space was likely compromised.

RCMP, BC Hydro and gas services were on scene as some power lines were still connected.

Two fire trucks with six personnel from the Enderby Fire Department came to assist, said Gros.

Another CSRD fire crew, the Scotch Creek/Lee Creek Fire Department, responded when two RV units were on fire at Caravans West in Scotch Creek around 8:50 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 6.

READ MORE: Two Scotch Creek RV units destroyed by fire


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Rebecca Willson

About the Author: Rebecca Willson

I took my first step into the journalism industry in November 2022 when I moved to Salmon Arm to work for the Observer and Eagle Valley News. I graduated with a journalism degree in December 2021 from MacEwan University in Edmonton.
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