Fire claims house in Fairwinds Tuesday night

Two people escaped from a house fire in Nanoose Bay Tuesday night.

Garnet and Barb Hunt captured this image of a house fire in Nanoose Bay's Fairwinds community Tuesday night.

NANOOSE BAY – Fire razed a home in the Fairwinds community of Nanoose Bay Tuesday night.

According to witnesses, two residents of the house escaped the flames, just before the fire claimed the building.

Nanoose Bay Volunteer Fire Department chief Doug Penny says they received the homeowners’ 9-1-1 call at 8:59 p.m. and the first responder from the hall was on scene eight minutes later. However, the house was fully engulfed in fire.

“(The owners) were getting a new roof and there were other renovations going on,” Penny said, noting without shingles on the roof — only strapping and tar paper — and with rooms lacking drywall and other finishing, the bare wood went up like matchsticks.

“It was just like a torch. Poof, it was gone.”

Twenty volunteer firefighters from Nanoose Bay attended the blaze, as did around 10 from the Parksville fire hall and an ambulance. No firefighters were injured that night.

The owners — Al and Judy Abbott, according to neighbours — got out of the house safely, wth only the clothes on their backs. Penny confirmed this, noting that the owners’ insurance company has already been in touch with his department for follow up.

An investigation into the cause of the fire isn’t likely, Penny added.

“There’s just nothing left,” he explained. “There’s nothing to look through (due to the extent of the damage).”

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