Penticton home gutted by fire

Fire consumed a Penticton residence on Saturday evening, killing two of the occupants' pets.

Investigator Ken Barbour of Penticton Fire Rescue takes photographs at the front of a house at 627 Martin St. Monday morning following a fire Saturday night which gutted the single family residence.

Investigator Ken Barbour of Penticton Fire Rescue takes photographs at the front of a house at 627 Martin St. Monday morning following a fire Saturday night which gutted the single family residence.

Fire consumed a Penticton residence on Saturday evening, killing two of the occupants’ pets.

Penticton Fire Chief Wayne Williams said the three-alarm blaze was called in just before 10:30 p.m. at a house on 627 Martin St.

“Upon arrival there was flame and smoke visible from the residence. The fire crew quickly did an interior search and made their way out because they could see the roof became fully involved,” said Williams. “All occupants were out of the house and we did find a cat and tried to revive it but it didn’t make it. I understand a reptile also didn’t make it but one cat did get outside to safety.”

Fire investigators are at the gutted residence today (Monday, June 16) to determine what the cause of the blaze was.

“It appears the fire started in the bedroom and possibly from candles but they will be investigating that (Monday). There is considerable smoke and fire damage from the room of origin and into the roof and attic area,” said Williams. “The occupants were very lucky to get out, very lucky.”

Williams said because the fire grew quickly into the roof, they had to call in 19 auxiliary firefighters to help contain the blaze.

“When it gets up into the roof and attic area it is quite open up there for the fire to move.  It is believed that the home had paper insulation which just burns a lot better,” said WIlliams.

It took just over four hours for the fire to be extinguished.

“The crews did a great job. One of our main concerns was that the fire didn’t go beyond the house it was burning. There was some space between the homes but there was a good chance flames could have impinged upon the building next door but we had a great crew knocking down the fire with a larger hose line,” WIlliams said.

Emergency social services, which provides short-term assistance to people who are forced to leave their home because of fire or other emergencies, assisted seven occupants who were living in the rented Martin Street home.