Winnipeg, MB – At 2:58 a.m. on September 29, 2020, the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service (WFPS) responded to a house fire in the 700 block of Burrows Avenue. The fire was reported by members flying in the Winnipeg Police Service’s Air1 helicopter. While waiting on arrival of WFPS crews, AIR1 members used their air siren to alert area residents of danger.
When WFPS arrived on scene, crews encountered flames and heavy smoke coming from the house. An offensive attack was launched and the fire was declared under control at 3:20 a.m.
One neighbouring home was temporarily evacuated as a precaution. One firefighter suffered an injury at the scene but did not require transport to hospital. No other injuries were reported.
The fire was determined to be accidental, believed to be caused by the improper disposal of a cigarette butt.
As conditions are dry in Winnipeg right now, and fallen leaves means there is added combustible debris on the ground, residents should take extra care when disposing of cigarette butts. Smoking material should always be extinguished in a proper ashtray or deep metal container. Cigarette butts should also never be thrown from balconies, car windows, or disposed of near any vegetation such as grass, leaves or brush.
Residents are reminded they should never use a plant pot as an ashtray. Potting soil is a mix of dirt and a number of combustible organic materials such as peat moss, shredded wood and minerals which are combustible. When a butt is put into a planter, it can smolder for several hours. Once the container heats up, it can crack, giving the smoldering material oxygen and the opportunity to spread to other combustibles such as decks, balconies, walls, etc.
Langside Street fire
At 4:31 a.m. on September 29, 2020, the WFPS responded to reports of a fire in a two-storey house in the 500 block of Langside Street. Crews extinguished a fire in the same home two days earlier.
When WFPS crews arrived on scene today, they encountered smoke and flames coming from the house and launched an offensive attack. The fire was declared under control at 4:54 a.m.
Crews completed a search of the structure and no occupants were located. Neighbouring homes were temporarily evacuated as a precaution. No injuries were reported.
Both fires in this house remain under investigation. Damage estimates are not available at this time.