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Fire breaks out at townhouse in northeast Coquitlam
Two people were sent to hospital for smoke inhalation after a fire broke out in a townhouse complex on Ozada Avenue in northeast Coquitlam on Saturday.
Investigators believed the fire was likely started by some candles that were burning in the foyer of one of the units and quickly spread throughout the home.
The unit where the blaze originated suffered significant fire damage and three neighboring units had extensive smoke and water damage. Crews were on the scene shortly after 2 p.m. and were able to quickly contain the flames.
Coquitlam assistant fire chief Jim Ogloff said candle fires are more common this time of year and reminded residents to be cautious with their holiday decorations.
"You have seasonal festivities and there's less daylight," he said. "All of those factors play into it."
Last week, the Insurance Bureau of Canada issued a warning to the public to be careful with their plastic holiday decorations and Christmas lights.
The organization said property owners should:
• Extinguish all candles when leaving a room or going to sleep and keep them away from items that can catch on fire.
• Keep Christmas trees well watered and away from heat sources.
• Christmas lights should come from a certified organization such as CSA or ULC and only indoor lights should be used inside the home.
• Do not overload electrical outlets and light strings and extension chords should be inspected before they are used.
• Chimneys should be cleaned and inspected once a year and only clean hardwood that has not been painted or chemically treated should be burned.