Brechin-area house fire blamed on smoking

A bedroom fire has displaced five people from a rental house in Nanaimo’s Brechin Hill district.

Firefighters were called out shortly before midnight Monday to a home in the 900 block of Brechin Road where they found thick, black smoke coming from a bedroom on the second floor.

Crews managed to contain the fire to the bedroom, but the house suffered smoke damage throughout the upper floor and water damage to a downstairs suite. None of the residents were injured, but fire investigators found no working smoke alarms in the upper suite of the house.

Ennis Mond, Nanaimo Fire Rescue fire prevention officer, said he is again stressing to tenants and landlords the importance of having working smoke alarms in residences.

Investigators determined smoking in bed was the cause of the fire. This is the second structure fire started by smoking in bed in Nanaimo this year following a fire started in a bedroom at a condominium complex on Wills Road Jan. 5.

None of the tenants had insurance. All five were given 72-hours lodging and other help through the Community Assistance Program.

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