Downtown Kamloops home gutted by fire on Friday; blaze sends thick smoke into sky

No one injured in inferno

UPDATE: 10:18 p.m.

No one was injured Friday when an inferno gutted a house on Columbia Street, not far from Prince Charles Park, in front of about 100 onlookers.

Emergency crews were called to 1214 Columbia St. just before 2 p.m. for a report of a grass fire about to spread to the deck. They arrived to find the house ablaze.

Seventeen firefighters worked for hours to extinguish the fire, the smoke from which could be seen across the city.

Kamloops Fire Rescue platoon Capt. Ken Hartt told Castanet there is no word yet on a cause.

“It’s a house fire with extensive damage,” he said.

“We’re unsure of the cause until we can get an investigator out there tomorrow.”

Hartt confirmed no one was injured in the blaze. A neighbour told Castanet she was told no one was home at the time.

Friday was warm in Kamloops, and the temperature was 33 C while the fire was burning. Crews were concerned the blaze might spread to another home, and a city employee was out telling neighbours to turn on their sprinklers to snuff out any potential embers.

The investigation into the fire is ongoing.

UPDATE: 2:45 p.m.

Firefighters are making good progress on a house fire in downtown Kamloops on Friday afternoon, but the home appears to be gutted.

The fire is believed to have started in the back yard at 1214 Columbia St. before spreading to deck and then the house. The roof was destroyed by flames.

A neighbour who lives across the street from the house told Castanet she doesn’t know who lives there, but she said a police officer at the scene told her no one is believed to have been inside.

Another neighbour across the street was urged by a city employee to turn on her front sprinklers while the home burned, to keep the fire from spreading to nearby properties.

Firefighters were called to the home just before 2 p.m. for a report of a grass fire that was in danger of spreading to the deck. Within minutes, the house was on fire.

About 100 neighbours and passersby watched the home burn from nearby streets and Prince Charles Park, which is less than a block to the west of the house.

Columbia Street is closed between 11th Avenue and 13th Avenue while crews deal with the blaze. Firefighters are expected to be at the scene for some time.

This story will be updated when more information is known.


A Kamloops home is fully engulfed in flames.

Firefighters are at the scene of the house fire on the 1200 block of Columbia Street. The initial call to 911 was for a grass fire that was in danger of spreading to the home’s deck.

The inferno has attracted a large crowd of bystanders in the neighbourhood.

A Castanet reporter at the scene has heard at least two loud explosions as the home burns.

More to come...

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