The aftermath of a fire that destroyed two houses, three garages, a coachhouse and four vehicles on Safflower Crescent in Chilliwack on July 11. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

UPDATE: Chilliwack RCMP Serious Crimes Unit investigating massive Safflower Crescent fire

GoFundMe accounts set up to help five families affected by blaze that destroyed five structures

There is no word yet whether investigators consider the Sardis fire that destroyed two houses and three garages on July 11 suspicious, but the file is in the hands of the Chilliwack RCMP’s Serious Crime Unit.

The blaze struck some time around 3 a.m. that day when the Chilliwack Fire Department from halls 1, 2, 4, 5 and 6 arrived to heavy smoke and flames from two homes, two garages and one carriage home.

Firefighters set up a defensive response and were able to stop the fire from spreading to adjacent properties.

In addition to the five structures destroyed, 11 more structures suffered minor heat damage. In the aftermath on Friday, it was evident four vehicles were destroyed in the fire and one motorcycle was either destroyed or suffered damage.

(See below for more photos of the aftermath.)

“Fortunately no one was injured in the fire,” Chilliwack RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Mike Rail said in a press release issued July 12. “The Chilliwack RCMP extend our appreciation for the patience of neighbours who are inconvenienced during the investigation.”

By Friday, July 13, the police tape around the neighbourhood was down, and the restricted area was down to fencing around the three properties most affected.

The fire hit so fast according to one witness that working smoke alarms didn’t go off.

• READ MORE: Two Sardis homes destroyed, others damaged, in massive fire

“The smoke alarms all work,” resident Rachel Perigny said. “We know because burnt toast sets them off. But the way the flames came through, there wasn’t enough smoke inside to set them off.”

Perigny and her family were awakened instead by pounding on the door from a resident of the coachhouse behind the Safflower Crescent house they rented.

For her part, Perigny said there “seems to be some strange circumstances around it all.”

Their family is now one of five who are at least temporarily displaced after the fire, including a single mother and her son in a basement suite and the couple from the coach house who saved them.

There were no civilian or firefighter injuries.

Anyone with information about the fire is asked to call the RCMP at 604-792-4611 or Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).

A friend set up a GoFundMe to help with Perigny’s family’s short-term needs at www.gofundme.com/z5vpv-emergency-funding-needed.

Another GoFundMe has also been set up to help all five families affected by the fire at www.gofundme.com/safflower-crest-house-fire.

And yet a third was set up to help the single mother living in a basement suite at one of the houses destroyed at www.gofundme.com/help-jessica-elliott-rebuild-from-fire?member=435674

There have been a rash of unrelated serious fires in Chilliwack in recent weeks with an arson at a barn, Banners Restaurant burning to the ground downtown, and another suspicious fire at a house where a man was the victim of a homicide.

• READ MORE: VIDEO: Chilliwack barn fire the result of arson according to investigators

• READ MORE: Fire destroys Chilliwack restaurant

• READ MORE: Suspicious fire guts house where man was killed


@PeeJayAitch
paul.henderson@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

The aftermath of a fire that destroyed two houses, three garages, a coachhouse and four vehicles on Safflower Crescent in Chilliwack on July 11. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

The aftermath of a fire that destroyed two houses, three garages, a coachhouse and four vehicles on Safflower Crescent in Chilliwack on July 11. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

Heat from the Safflower Crescent fire on July 11 damaged several other homes nearby. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

Heat from the Safflower Crescent fire on July 11 melted green bins across the lane. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

A pair of figure skates in the debris after of a fire that destroyed two houses, three garages, a coachhouse and four vehicles on Safflower Crescent in Chilliwack on July 11. (Paul Henderson/ The Progress)

A fire destroyed two homes and three garages in a Sardis neighbourhood in the early hours on July 11. (Photo John Lippold)

Just Posted

Fatal railway crossing accident in Chilliwack highlights risks for people in wheelchairs: TSB report

Transportation Safety Board points to ‘persistent risks faced by persons using assistive devices’

Indie rock meets classic rock for Mudsharks 3 concert in Chilliwack

The local band will be playing both original hits and cover songs at free concert at Corky’s

Molson-Coors to honour Sto:lo culture and history at Chilliwack brewery

Artist proposals sought by July 30 to design and install a commemorative piece

Tractor exhaust pipe causes fire on Agassiz field

Agassiz fire crews were on scene around 1 p.m. Tuesday

Yale man arrested after fleeing police in downtown Hope

Man arrested on three outstanding warrants after being caught in stolen van

VIDEO: Missing teens named as suspects in three northern B.C. killings

Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky are wanted in the deaths of Lucas Fowler, Chynna Deese, unknown man

Southern resident killer whale died of blunt trauma, likely from ship

J34 was found more than two years ago near Sechelt, but the necropsy findings have now been released

B.C. teens wanted in double homicide, suspicious death spotted in Manitoba

Kam McLeod and Bryer Schmegelsky were thought to have been seen in the Gillam area

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

Wrestling legend finds his wedding dance groove in B.C.

Professional wrestler Chris Jericho posted on social media that he was in Penticton recently

Vancouver Public Library banned from Pride parade after allowing controversial speaker

Vancouver Public Library allowed Meghan Murphy to book space for an event at the library in January

Man arrested after allegedly attacking people with syringe in Burnaby mall

Police say that no one has yet to come forward with injuries consistent with needle stab wounds

Horgan hints at Daylight Saving Time changes after record survey response

More than 223,000 online surveys were submitted in the government’s public consultation

Most Read