The scene on Blackburn Road resembled World War III, according to one witness as a home and RV were consumed by flames on Tuesday morning.
“I heard an explosion and then many many more after that,” said Usha Rautenbach, a witness to the fire. “The other thing of course was that I was hearing sirens from every direction. It sounded like they were coming from the Cranberry and Blackburn. There was just more and more of them.”
Thick black smoke filled the air near 364 Blackburn Rd., a home on the Salt Spring Garbage Services transfer station property. As first responders arrived on scene, a series of small explosions followed by at least one large hollow boom rang out as the propane tanks inside the RV exploded. Bystanders were kept at a distance to keep them safe from the explosions. Firefighters attacked the blaze from two angles trying to stop the spread of the fire.
The exact origin of the fire is unknown, as an investigation has not yet been conducted. However, the flames spread to both the home and the RV, which were completely consumed in the fire. Reports on social media state that the owners of the home were unharmed in the fire.
Fire crews from all three stations were on scene fighting the fire into the afternoon, followed by a clean-up operation that lasted until until 7 p.m. on Tuesday. Blackburn Road was closed for a short period to allow the crews to operate safely.
The fire is under investigation by the RCMP.
Further updates will be available as they come.