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Fire crews move quickly to contain brush fire in Errington

Fire chief says it took 35 minutes to control the blaze

Firefighters quickly contained a brush fire on a huge field on a property on Grafton Road in Errington on Wednesday (June 23).

The Coombs-Hilliers Fire Department received a call at 1:25 p.m. and upon arriving at the scene, there were two fires burning.

“They were mowing the lawn with a lawn tractor or mowing the field hit rocks at several locations, sparks contacted the dry grass, setting two separate fires,” said fire chief Aaron Poirier.

Errington Fire Department and the Qualicum Beach Fire Department were also deployed to help fight the fire that Poirier indicated had the potential of getting out of hand.

“Our priorities were obviously structure protection to stop extension so we had three homes that have may have been challenged,” said Poirier. “So our priorities were aggressive fire attack and structure protection to contain the fire in the field to the field of origin.”

READ MORE: Exploding camper van torches Highway 4 gas station between Qualicum Beach and Port Alberni

Several hoses were deployed and it took fire crews approximately 35 minutes to get the blaze under control. Following that, crews continued to work on the field to make sure there were no hotspots remaining.

The owner of the property, Nancy Randall, was shocked how the fire quickly spread.

“I couldn’t believe it,” said Randall. “It happened so fast. It gives you a sense of how things can easily go wrong. We were just mowing the field to keep it safer. It was totally unexpected.”

Randall was extremely grateful for neighbours who came out to assist and also for the quick response from the fire department.

“I am so overwhelmed,” said Randall. “Seriously. I want to do something for all the firefighters. I want to give them an appreciation gift. Boy, do they deserve it.”

Poirier said the incident was accidental but it also shows how dangerous fire conditions are at this time.

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Michael Briones

About the Author: Michael Briones

I rejoined the PQB News team in April 2017 from the Comox Valley Echo, having previously covered sports for The NEWS in 1997.
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