Bob Griffiths’ Tuesday lunch was interrupted by the Vernon Fire Department.
Firefighters banged on Griffiths’ first-floor corner unit door at the south end of Parkland Garden Estates in the 4100 block of Alexis Park Drive at around 1:30 p.m. to tell him there was a fire on the roof of the building.
“I was just having lunch when the firefighters knocked and said, ‘Get out,’” said Griffiths, who owns his unit and his lived at Parkland Garden Estates for 12 years.
“All I saw was black smoke when I got out.”
The smoke was visible to passing motorist Andrew Gilbert, who was concerned because a friend of his lives in the building.
“There was a lot of black smoke and the flames were shooting up about, oh, eight-feet high,” said Gilbert, who was relieved to discover that the fire wasn’t in his friend’s suite, and that his friend wasn’t home.
Vernon firefighters arrived quickly on the scene and were able to contain the fire to a north end corner rooftop-soffit area, where the blaze began.
Deputy fire chief Jack Blair said roofers had been working re-roofing the building when he believes a spark managed to get underneath some roofing material which led to the fire starting.
“Our guys suppressed it quite quickly,” said Blair.
“Unfortunately part of the job is overhaul, where we have to take quite an area of the roof and strip back down to the ceiling joist to ensure there is no extension of the fire.”
The fire was contained to the roof area only and there was no damage to any of the suites or contents.
The tenants of the suite directly below the fire were not home at the time.
It is estimated there are 40 units in two buildings located onsite at Parkland Garden Estates.