Local News

Tenants escape overnight fire that destroys Penticton, B.C. home

A South Okanagan home is thought to be a total loss following an overnight fire that sent two people to hospital for smoke inhalation.

The Penticton Fire Department says it was just after 2 a.m., when they received a call about smoke and flames coming from a home along the 300 block of Rigsby Street.

“When crews arrived, the house was fully involved and flames were venting out of the windows,” said fire chief Mike Larsson, adding it was a stubborn fire that required 23 firefighters to douse it.

The home’s three residents managed to escape the fire, though two were taken to hospital for smoke inhalation.

Global News spoke with a neighbour who said he happened to be outside when he saw smoke coming from the home.

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He called 911 as the fire quickly developed. Large flames and plumes of smoke could be seen from across the downtown core.

The tenants made it out in time, but witnesses say they were covered in soot. Two were sent to hospital with smoke inhalation but have since been released.

Their pets, however, did not survive.

Larrson said crews did a great job of knocking the fire down and protecting neighbouring houses.

“It was a stubborn fire and crews were on scene until 8 a.m.,” he said.

“The home was the main source of all the flames. There were some surrounding bushes and one neighbouring house did have minor damage.”

The fire’s cause is currently unknown, though an investigation is underway.

The home’s property manager said an older couple had been living in the house for the past 20 years.

The couple were described as good tenants, and that the property management is hoping it can find them another place to live.

The tenants are currently under the care of Emergency Support Services.

“It’s a sad ending to an old house and a good tenancy,” said Rick Allercott. “I feel bad for the tenants; they were really good tenants and I hope everything is OK with them.”

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