Six birds killed in early morning Maple Ridge house fire

Three taken to hospital.

  • Sep. 5, 2018 8:30 a.m.

A family of five and several pets escaped a house fire early Wednesday in Maple Ridge.

The fire started on Greenwell Street and Purdey Avenue, sometime before 3:30 a.m.

One of the daughters woke the rest of the family. All escaped, although three were taken to hospital. The father may have suffered some burns to his head.

Several pets were recovered, but six birds died and two cats remain missing.

Maple Ridge assistant fire chief Michael Van Dop said that the house was fully involved in flames when firefighters arrived.

Three people were taken to hospital with injuries, but have since been released.

“One of the adults had first- and second-degree burns on their head, but treated and released,” Van Dop said.

“Everybody was out of the house on our arrival. The home is heavily fire-damaged.”

Crews remain on scene this morning to do an investigation to try to determine the cause.

Van Dop confirmed that pet birds in the house on the upper storey didn’t survive, but firefighters did rescue three guinea pigs from the basement.

Tony Tonnellier, who lives in the basement, said the smoke alarms sounded waking his sister, who alerted the rest of the family. “I was the last one out. Within 15 minutes, the whole upstairs was burning,” said Tonnellier. “I’ve never been in a fire like that. I didn’t know a house could burn that quickly.”

His girlfriend Kristin Connor escaped as soon as she could. “I grabbed my slippers, glasses, phone and phone charger and got out.” She later recovered some of other possessions, such as her identification, jewelry and clothes. The family has been in the house for about five years and have house insurance.

The fire department, with Fire Hall No. 1 visible from the house, just north of Dewdney Trunk Road, was there in minutes.

One cat, named Spooky was rescued and was resting in a cat carrier in one of the family’s vehicles. But the other two cats, Sophie and Honey were missing. Connor though noted that firefighters haven’t found them inside, and that the doors were open when the house was on fire.

“We’re hopeful, always hopeful. Cats are pretty resilient little animals in terms of taking care of themselves and getting out. I wouldn’t go so far as to say they’re gone at this point, just unaccounted for,” Van Dop said.

Most of the residents reported the smoke alarms sounding, Van Dop added. “So that’s good. Working smoke alarms save lives.”

Six trucks responded and 25 firefighters tackled the blaze.

 

Firefighters are investigating overnight blaze on Greenwell Street in Maple Ridge. (THE NEWS/files)

Spooky survived fire but other two cats are missing. (Phil Melnychuk/THE NEWS)

Just Posted

WATCH: Brother of missing Hope woman makes emotional appeal for more media attention

Next search for Shawnee Inyallie Nov. 18 along Highway 1 towards Boston Bar

Gas price drop expected to hit Fraser Valley today

Analyst says to take advantage, warns slight increase may follow

Players Guild challenges Chilliwack residents to solve classic Agatha Christie whodunit mystery

The Chilliwack Players Guild is performing Murder on the Nile from Nov. 22 to Dec. 2

HATS invites Hope residents to talk about addiction in the midst of opioid overdose crisis

First talk happening Thursday, Nov. 15 at Blue Moose Coffee House

Chilliwack teen to take on the world after winning Canadian junior dog-handling national championship

Chilliwack’s Kayla Penney is heading to Crufts to compete for her first international title

Fashion Fridays: 5 coats you need this winter!

Kim XO, lets you know the best online shopping tips during Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

U.S. mayor and dying dog’s roadtrip to B.C. goes viral

First vacation in three years came a month after blood cancer diagnosis

Federal fall update expected to offer more support for struggling news industry

Ottawa committed $50 million over five years for local journalism in ‘underserved communities’ last budget

UK’s May appeals to public on Brexit, braces for more blows

British Prime Minister Theresa May answered questions from callers on a radio phone-in, the day after she vowed to stay in office

VIDEO: Stan Lee leaves posthumous message for his fans

Marvel Comics’ co-creator died on Monday at the age of 95

$136M in transit funding coming to B.C.

The announcement was made at the BC Transit yard in Langford on Friday morning

Ottawa apologizes to Japanese family in B.C. after chopping historic cherry trees

Plaque installed in Prince Rupert to honour the memory of Shotaro Shimizu

Two B.C. police officers, held in Cuba for months, cleared of sex assault allegations

Port Moody Const. Jordan Long and Vancouver Const. Mark Simms have been in Cuba since March

Sunrise ceremony at B.C. legislature honours Louis Riel

Nov. 16 marks the 133rd anniversary of the Métis leader’s death

Most Read