Fire destroys Maple Ridge home

Firefighters fight a house fire on 118th Avenue in Maple Ridge, across from Alexander Robinson elementary, early Wednesday morning. - Barry Brinkman/Special to THE NEWS
Firefighters fight a house fire on 118th Avenue in Maple Ridge, across from Alexander Robinson elementary, early Wednesday morning.
— image credit: Barry Brinkman/Special to THE NEWS

A fire that destroyed a house in Maple Ridge early Wednesday remains under investigation.

The blaze on 118th Avenue, near Alexander Robinson elementary, was discovered around 2:30 a.m. by tenants.

The owners, who lives above them, are out of the country on a holiday but were expected to return home on Thursday.

Fire chief Dane Spence said one of the tenants heard a noise, went to investigate and spotted flames.

The man woke up his wife and young son who fled the house in their pyjamas. They escaped without injuries.

"They didn't have time to take anything but the clothes on their back," said Spence.

Neighbours called the fire department who rushed to the scene to find the back of the house completely engulfed in flames.

"It was a very large fire," said Spence, adding that the flames and water also damaged a second house to the west.

The house and its contents were severely damaged in the fire and are most likely not salvageable.

We are actively investigating the fire but as of now we do not know how it started, said Spence.

Emergency social services were also on hand to help the young couple and their son who were left homeless by the fire.

Crews worked into the morning putting out hot spots that continued to ignite in the debris.

While crews were battling the fire on 118th St., the fire department received a second call for a possible fire at an apartment in the downtown core.

"With potentially two structure fires, it tapped out all of our resources in Maple Ridge and we asked for our fire department partners in Pitt Meadows to assist us," said Spence.

The apartment fire on 223rd Street turned out to be caused by a malfunctioning heating unit.

Once the heating unit was turned off, the smoke in the building dissipated and their fire alarm was reset.

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