Garage fire suspicious

A carport fire on Kennedy Street Wednesday may have been intentionally set.

Doug Bell, chief fire investigator with Nanaimo Fire Rescue, said neighbours called the fire department to the 600 block of Kennedy Street around 8 p.m. to put out the blaze, which started in a carport attached to a shed.

The structure was across the lawn from a duplex.

Bell wouldn't say why fire investigators believe the fire was intentionally set, other than that police are now investigating.

"We're treating it as suspicious," he said. "We've turned it all over to the RCMP."

Bell said the carport and shed were both being used to store a number of items that previous tenants of the duplex had left behind, from old mattresses and sofas to clothing, toys and even a stove.

The fire destroyed the carport and everything in it and all items in the shed are likely a write-off due to smoke and heat damage, he said.

Fire crews returned to the property at about 2:20 a.m. Thursday because the pile of discarded belongings began smouldering again.

Bell said crews had left someone on scene in case that happened – when crews deal with a large pile of debris, whether it's remains of a house or belongings, hot spots might not be entirely extinguished near the bottom of the pile and the fire can start going again.

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