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Port Alberni RCMP suspect arson in house fire

Dec 08 2011

Port Alberni RCMP are investigating after someone set fire to the outside of a home Wednesday night.

Port Alberni firefighters rushed to a home in the 4700-block of Redford Street around 7 p.m. after the homeowners discovered flames at the back part of the house’s exterior, said RCMP spokeswoman Cpl. Jen Allan.

“They heard something, looked outside and saw flames shooting from the north east corner of his home,” Allen said.

The homeowner was able to put out most of the fire with a garden hose, which mitigated the damage to the home.

Police found accelerants which led to believe the fire was arson and a dog team was brought in to search for evidence.

“We don’t believe it was targeted,” said Allen. “We believe it was random, a crime of opportunity.”

Allen said the damage would have been much worse had no one been home at the time or if the fire was set overnight.

She said there have been no other suspicious residential fires recently but police are still warning people in the area to be vigilant.

Officers have canvassed residents in the area, a densely populated residential neighbourhood, but have yet to identify any suspects, Allen said.

Anyone with information about the arson should call Port Alberni RCMP at 250-723-2424 or call CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).