Salmon Arm firefighters continue knocking out hotspots in the hedge on Monday, Feb. 3, 2020. (Salmon Arm Fire Department photo)

Salmon Arm firefighters continue knocking out hotspots in the hedge on Monday, Feb. 3, 2020. (Salmon Arm Fire Department photo)

Hedge fire at Salmon Arm town homes deemed suspicious

Incident serves as opportunity to remind property owners to be FireSmart

A suspicious hedge fire that occurred at a city townhome complex Monday has prompted a request to property owners to consider potential wildfire risks.

Just after 3 p.m. on Feb. 3, Salmon Arm firefighters responded to a report of a brush fire at townhomes in the 100 block of 20th Street NE. Upon arrival, firefighters found a bordering hedge to be ablaze and sending a plume of smoke high in the sky. The fire was quickly extinguished and, though it didn’t reach the nearby townhome unit, there was still external damage from the heat.

The following day, Feb. 4, the Salmon Arm Fire Department stated on its Facebook page that the blaze was suspicious in nature, stressing that it occurred in winter when the temperature was -3 Celsius.

“Although suspicious in nature, do you think a hedge fire would produce enough heat to damage a home 25-feet away in the middle of winter? What if this was August 3rd?,” asks the fire department.

The fire department asks that Salmon Arm residents start considering ways to be FireSmart around their properties, referring to the B.C. FireSmart manual for home owners. The manual provides steps to reduce the fire risks around residences.

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Salmon Arm firefighters responded to a suspicious hedge fire that caused damage to a townhome complex in the 100 block of 20th Street NE on Monday, Feb. 3, 2020. (Salmon Arm Fire Department photo)

Salmon Arm firefighters responded to a suspicious hedge fire that caused damage to a townhome complex in the 100 block of 20th Street NE on Monday, Feb. 3, 2020. (Salmon Arm Fire Department photo)