Chilliwack arson fires under investigation

RCMP and fire officials are investigating two arson fires start early Wednesday morning

RCMP and fire officials are investigating two arson fires start early Wednesday morning – one that forced the evacuation of a downtown apartment building and sent two people to hospital with minor smoke inhalation.

The fires were started at around 3:30 a.m. in the 9400 block of Nowell Street and the 46000 block of Bole Avenue.

When firefighters from Halls 1 and 4 arrived at the Nowell Street fire, they found a fully involved vehicle fire located in the underground parkade of a three-storey apartment building. Crews managed to quickly bring the fire under control. The east side of the building sustained exterior heat and smoke damage. Interior smoke damage was prevalent throughout the building.

All tenants were safely evacuated out of the building, with two residents sent to hospital with minor smoke inhalation.

Meanwhile, just down the street on Bole Avenue, residents from a nearby apartment building were using a garden hose to douse a fire that had been started in the dumpster. When firefighters arrived, the blaze was quickly extinguished.

Both fires were deliberately set and are under investigation by Chilliwack Fire Department and RCMP fire investigators.

If anyone has any information about this fire, they are asked to call the RCMP at 604-792-4611 or anonymously through Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or www.chilliwackcrimestoppers.ca

In addition, the fire department is reminding apartment managers and owners padlock dumpsters that are accessible to the public, particularly during the evening and early morning.