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Saskatoon — Garage fires cause more than $100K in damages

Portable heater, block heater cause a pair of structure fires

SASKATOON — The Saskatoon Fire Department responded to a pair of garage fires over the weekend — one on Clarence Avenue South and one on Sutter Avenue.

The fire investigator deemed both fires as accidental, with an estimated total damage of $110,000.

The Clarence Avenue fire happened in the 2500 block Saturday, Jan. 15, with the SFD Communications Centre receiving the call at 11:48 p.m. Dispatched to the scene were three fire engines, one ladder truck, a rescue unit and the battalion chief.

The first crews arrived at 11:51 p.m. and reported heavy smoke coming out from a detached garage. Firefighters used the hose line in the bumper of the fire engine to attack the fire while other crews accessed the garage’s interior through the main door.

The tactical commander assigned other duties to incoming fire crews upon their arrival. The fire was brought under control at around midnight Sunday, but fire crews remained on scene to make sure the flames or heat did not extend to the roof or attic.

The last fire crews left at 12:46 a.m. and the scene was turned over to a fire investigator.

The fire investigator determined the fire was accidental due to a block heater cord being plugged into an extension cord. The cord had been pinched from the hood being closed and compressing it.

The fire originated in the hood area of the vehicle and the damage caused by the fire is estimated to be at $60,000. The fire investigator secured the garage to prevent any other incidents before leaving the scene.

Another garage caught fire in the 700 block of Sutter Avenue early Friday morning with the call being received at 1:16 a.m. Dispatched to the scene were three fire engines, one ladder truck, a rescue unit, and the battalion chief.

First arriving fire crews saw the residents of the house waiting outside while smoke was coming out from the garage. Tactical duties were then assigned to incoming fire crews where they immediately attacked the fire through the garage’s broken window.

The fire investigator took over the scene after the fire was brought under control at 1:43 a.m. The investigator determined the fire was accidental, caused by a portable heater being too close to combustible materials.

The electrical heater had been plugged in and running in the garage since 6 p.m. the previous evening. Damage is estimated at $50,000.

No injuries to civilians or firefighters were reported in either fire.