Crews responded to a vehicle fire in the Harwood area Monday morning. (Caitlin Clow - Morning Star)

GALLERY: Senior crashes into parked cars, truck catches fire at school

Monday morning blaze sends crews out near Harwood Elementary

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP said an 82-year-old man was driving the pickup truck that ignited in the parking lot of an elementary school after colliding with several parked vehicles on Monday.

“As a result of the collision, the vehicle leaked fluid and caught on fire,” Cpl. Tania Finn said.

The driver collided with two parked cars, a utility trailer and a concrete barricade before the pickup truck came to rest in the parking lot of Harwood Elementary School, RCMP said.

The man was able to exit the vehicle on his own and although he appeared uninjured, he was taken to hospital as a medical issue may have contributed to the incident.

Cpl. Finn said the man believed his wife was at the school and he was driving to see if she was there.

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“When we arrived, no one was in the vehicle and we were able to extinguish the fire before it extended to the building or surrounding area,” Vernon Fire Captain Rob Cucheran said.

The school was in session, but no children were outdoors at the time of the incident.

RCMP said students were kept inside the school and there was no safety risk posed to the children or staff.

“Out of caution for the health of the students, police requested they remain inside in order to minimize any exposure to the smoke from vehicle fire,” Cpl. Finn said.

Firefighters extinguished the fire just before 11 a.m. and VFRS members returned to the scene shortly after to put down absorbent material where other vehicles were leaking fluids after being struck by the vehicle prior to the fire.

READ MORE: Precautionary evacuation still in effect for Vernonites near mudslide


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