A fire in Oyster River had already engulfed a number of structures after crews arrived on scene. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department

Trio of Vancouver Island fire deparments respond to barn blaze

Oyster River, Courtenay and Campbell River fire departments all respond to incident

Fire crews had a busy Canada Day as three departments responded to a barn fire near Oyster River.

The initial call came in to the Oyster River Fire Department at around 11:30 on July 1. Crews responded to a structure fire on Macaulay Road in Oyster River. When they arrived, three barns were already on fire, with a fourth in danger of catching.

“En route, dispatch told us that there’d been multiple calls, so we knew it was a big structure fire,” said Oyster River department chief Bruce Green. “Driving up the road to the fire we could see the big columns of smoke there. When the deputy chief got on scene, he quickly determined that the barns that were already involved, we weren’t going to be able to salvage them, so we were going to make a stand and save the last barn that was still standing.”

Campbell River and Courtenay fire departments were also called for mutual aid. The barns were far from any hydrant, and the two other departments brought tankers and engines to help support the Oyster River team. Even with the extra help, it was a long day for those on the scene.

“In total there were about 45 fire fighters on scene throughout the day, and we were there until 7 o’clock at night to put it out,” Green said.

Campbell River Fire Chief Thomas Doherty said that his crew was on scene until 5:30, and that they supplied one tanker truck and one engine.

“Our engine crew was assigned to assist in suppression efforts immediately when they arrived and our water tender shuttled water from a nearby hydrant to the scene,” he said.

No injuries to humans or animals were reported.

“Fortunately it was mainly a hay operation and there were only four cows that were close to the barns and they all got out fine,” Green said.

However, the hay inside the barns combined with the dry and windy conditions on July 1 caused the blaze to spread rapidly.

“It sounds like they were using a skid steer to put hay into the barn, and a bale that was already in there fell off and landed on the hot exhaust pipe of the skid steer,” Green explained. “Then there was wind that day going in the direction of the barns and they caused it to spread rapidly. And because the barns are old and there’s dust and stuff on the 2x4s… it’s an open structure right, and it just runs.”

RCMP were on scene as well helping direct traffic around the incident.



marc.kitteringham@campbellrivermirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

fireNews

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Crews work on extinguishing multiple structures near Oyster River on July 1. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department

Campbell River Fire Department and Courtenay Fire Department were on scene at Oyster River giving mutual aid on July 1, 2020. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department

A fire near Oyster River kept three fire departments busy on Canada Day. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department

Just Posted

Three active COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island

Since July 24, Central island has had five new cases, North one, South none

Regional District of Nanaimo urges residents to sign up for new emergency alert system

RDN aligns its alert technology with Nanaimo, Parksville and Qualicum Beach

Cougar euthanized after attacking small dog in Dunsmuir area

Attack happened during middle of the day while family was outside painting house

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

One dead as fish boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

Landlord takes front door, windows after single B.C. mom late with rent

Maple Ridge mom gets help from community generosity and government

42 more people test positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

The province has recorded no new deaths in recent days

Joe Biden selects California Sen. Kamala Harris as running mate

Harris and Biden plan to deliver remarks Wednesday in Wilmington

Lawsuit launched after Florida child handcuffed, booked and briefly jailed

Suit alleges “deliberate indifference” to what should have been handled as a behavioural issue

Russia approves vaccine, Putin hopes to begin mass production

Critic calls decision to proceed without thorough testing ‘dangerous and grossly immoral’

Doctor slain in Alberta medical clinic was devoted father, husband

Red Deer doctors on edge after attack on colleague who had two young daughters

Most Read