UPDATED: Cause of Annacis Island fire still unknown

Delta fire department battled the blaze until early Tuesday morning

The Delta fire department was battling a blaze on Annacis Island throughout the night, dealing with a structure fire that broke out on Derwent Way Monday afternoon.

A warehouse building next to Ideal Welders caught fire just after 3 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 7. The Delta fire department was called to the scene at 3:25 p.m.

According to Delta Fire Chief Dan Copeland, firefighters spent the first three hours attempting to contain the fire, which was complicated by the shape of the building and the fact the fire had been able to get a significant hold on the building.

Flames were seen shooting out of the roof, and firefighters were forced to go on the defensive to protect the surrounding buildings.

As of Tuesday morning, fire crews were still at the on scene, looking for hot spots.

Derwent Way was closed between Annance Court and Audley Boulevard, and Delta police were on scene to assist in traffic control from 3:30 p.m. onwards. The roads reopened Tuesday morning. Also at the scene were B.C. Ambulance, Delta Engineering and Fortis B.C.

At the height of the fire, there were 43 firefighters and 10 firefighting apparatuses on scene, as well as more people at the fire hall. On average, the Delta fire department has 32 people on staff, making the crew numbers at the fire much higher than normal.

Residents and travellers seeing smoke and posting the images to Twitter around 3 p.m. According to many, black plumes of smoke could be seen for kilometres around.

Erica Tucker saw the smoke and called the Delta fire department. She posted two videos to the North Delta Reporter Facebook page showing the fire. The first was taken just after 4 p.m., which showed smoke billowing from across the river. The second, taken after 5 p.m., shows black smoke continuing to pour out of the building.

According to Delta police public affairs coordinator Sharlene Brooks, no one was working at the time the fire broke out, and no injuries are reported. Several neighbouring businesses were cleared as a precaution.

An investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing, although a release put out by the fire department noted there was work being done to the building at the time of the fire.

 

A fire broke out at a welding business on Annacis Island on Monday. (Bradley Breedveld/Twitter)