Cause of massive Sunday-morning blaze in Coombs remains under investigation

Firefighters battled a massive fire in Coombs early Jan. 3, 2021. (Coombs-Hilliers Volunteer Fire Department Facebook photo)Firefighters battled a massive fire in Coombs early Jan. 3, 2021. (Coombs-Hilliers Volunteer Fire Department Facebook photo)
Firefighters battled a massive fire in Coombs early Jan. 3, 2021. (Coombs-Hilliers Volunteer Fire Department Facebook photo)Firefighters battled a massive fire in Coombs early Jan. 3, 2021. (Coombs-Hilliers Volunteer Fire Department Facebook photo)
The facade of a Coombs building that caught fire early Jan. 3, 2021. The damage was extensive. (Michael Briones photo)The facade of a Coombs building that caught fire early Jan. 3, 2021. The damage was extensive. (Michael Briones photo)
Firefighters battled a massive fire in Coombs early Jan. 3, 2021. (Coombs-Hilliers Volunteer Fire Department Facebook photo)Firefighters battled a massive fire in Coombs early Jan. 3, 2021. (Coombs-Hilliers Volunteer Fire Department Facebook photo)
Firefighters battled a massive fire in Coombs early Jan. 3, 2021. (Coombs-Hilliers Volunteer Fire Department Facebook photo)Firefighters battled a massive fire in Coombs early Jan. 3, 2021. (Coombs-Hilliers Volunteer Fire Department Facebook photo)

The cause of a massive blaze that lit up the darkened early-morning sky in Coombs on Jan. 3 is still under investigation.

Fire Chief Aaron Poirier of the Coombs-Hilliers Volunteer Fire Department said the investigation is still underway in collaboration with the fire department, the Office of the Fire Commissioner (OFC), and various other parties.

According to the provincial government website on fire prevention, safety and reporting, local assistants to the fire commissioner must report fires to the OFC if the fire is (including, but not limited to); a suspected incendiary fire where a suspect has been identified; a suspected incendiary fire where no suspect has been identified; or if the fire is of unusual origin or circumstance.

Poirier said he doesn’t believe there are any hazards the public should be aware of.

READ MORE: Massive early-morning blaze destroys building, home in Coombs

Other detachments from Deep Bay to Lantzville also responded Sunday night, and one unidentified firefighter on-scene said that at one point, “the flames climbed to almost 100 feet in the air.”

The CHVFD arrived at approximately 2 a.m. Sunday morning, and Poirier said firefighters didn’t leave until approximately 3:30 p.m.

“The quick action of initial on-scene crews prevented the blaze from spreading,” said Poirier. “By use of master streams and by protecting potential exposures to ensure the fire was contained within the building of origin.”

Despite being a rural community with no infrastructure for fire hydrants, the fire chief said they were still able to bring water in via tanker trucks.

mandy.moraes@pqbnews.com

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