Fire spreads to second house
Family of 3 escapes, 2 firefighters injured in early morning blaze
Two Ottawa firefighters were injured in an early morning fire yesterday that destroyed two homes in the Arlington Woods area.
The fire broke out at about 12:45 a.m. at a house under construction at 6 Midland Cres. One firefighter was treated in hospital for first- and seconddegree burns to his arms and back. The second suffered an ankle injury.
The fire spread to an adjacent single-family home, where a family of three managed to escape without injury, a fire department spokesman said.
Despite the efforts of fire crews, both homes were destroyed. Damage is estimated at $1 million.
Nick Noreau, the owner of 6 Midland Cres., which was nearly done construction, was devastated.
“I have no idea what we’re going to do. We were supposed to move in Sept. 1. There is nothing left. We sold our other house. I don’t know what we’re going to do,” Mr. Noreau said.
There was no electricity, gas or running water in the house yet, making an electrical fire or gas leak as the cause unlikely.
Keith Hanlan, who lives beside the two burned houses, was awakened by his dog at around 12:40 a.m.
“The fire was already big at that point and made the jump to the other house before the fire trucks even arrived,” said Mr. Hanlan. The roof of his house, which firefighters hosed down to ensure the fire didn’t spread, was damaged by the intense heat.
The two destroyed houses were built by the same builder, who has had troubles with mischief on the properties before.
“My first thought was arson. The other house at 4 Midland had a small fire in the basement before people moved in it
— was kids who started it,” said Mr. Hanlan, who also described problems of trespassing and graffiti.
“It was tequila sunrise last night, so you never know, but I didn’t hear anything,” said Mr. Hanlan. Tequila sunrise is an unofficial party held throughout the city in which high school students drink alcohol and par- ty until the sun comes up.
Fire crews were still on the scene yesterday morning and a fire investigator has been called in. No cause has been determined.