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Maple Ridge fire chief gives update on downtown fire

More than 50 firefighters were used to extinguish blaze
Maple Ridge Fire and Rescue chief Michael Van Dop said that the June 10 fire had been completely extinguished by 3 p.m. (Brandon Tucker/The News)

The biggest danger is now over, but there’s still a lot of work to do.

That’s the message Maple Ridge Fire and Rescue chief Michael Van Dop shared on Saturday afternoon, after his team had spent more than 12 hours fighting a massive fire in the 22500-block of Brown Avenue.

READ MORE: Downtown Maple Ridge fire burns new condo development to the ground

“We got called last night at midnight to a report of an apartment structure fire,” explained Van Dop. “On our arrival, the crews came across a fully engulfed apartment building. The building was a four-storey wood frame building that was completely burned up.”

However, the condo complex known as Edge on Edge 3 wasn’t the only casualty of the fire.

“The building to the east is completely consumed and the one to the west is heavily fire damaged and unliveable,” said the Maple Ridge chief.

Battling the blaze took about 50 firefighters and 12 apparatuses explained Van Dop, including resources from both Mission and Pitt Meadows.

READ MORE: Maple Ridge officials praise emergency responders for handling of devastating fire

But by 3 p.m. on June 10, the fire had finally been completely extinguished.

“We’re demobilizing the scene now. We have to turn over the occupied apartment to the insurance interest and restoration companies so they can begin to do their work in trying to minimize loss in the building as it relates to water damage. The building needs to be rendered secure with fencing and that will be the end of our suppression efforts, but we have some investigative work to do.”

Van Dop estimated that the extensive damage from the fire could keep residents out of Edge on Edge 2 for more than a year.

READ MORE: Maple Ridge man forced from home due to massive June 10 fire

In the meantime, there’s a lot of cleaning up to do, and Van Dop warned that if locals had debris on their property, they should follow some safety steps before doing anything with it.

“Make sure you’re wearing gloves when handling any debris, make sure it’s cool to the touch, and then you can dispose of it through your garbage,” he said.

As far as the cause of the fire goes, Van Dop said it was much too early to make any determinations.

“We know the building of origin was the one that was under construction. However, it’s been completely razed by fire, so it’s very difficult to ascertain a cause at this point. We will be conducting an investigation, but it will likely culminate with mostly video evidence and interviews.”

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