VIDEO: Nelson firefighters battle fire at Victoria and Josephine

Nelson firefighters tackled a blaze at the corner of Josephine and Victoria on Thursday evening. Photo: Tyler Harper
Nelson firefighters tackled a blaze in a commercial building Thursday evening — the third fire they have responded to this week. Photo: Greg Nesteroff
Nelson firefighters tackled a blaze in a commercial building Thursday evening — the third fire they have responded to this week. Photo: Greg Nesteroff
Nelson firefighters tackled a blaze in a commercial building Thursday evening — the third fire they have responded to this week. Photo: Greg Nesteroff
Nelson firefighters tackled a blaze in a commercial building Thursday evening — the third fire they have responded to this week. Photo: Greg Nesteroff
Nelson firefighters tackled a blaze in a commercial building Thursday evening — the third fire they have responded to this week. Photo: Greg Nesteroff
Firefighters tried an “aggressive interior attack,” but eventually the roof was damaged to the point where they had to fight the fire from the outside. Photo: Nelson Fire Rescue

Nelson firefighters were still trying to put out a commercial fire late Thursday evening at the corner of Josephine and Victoria streets.

Earlier in the evening, flames and smoke could be seen coming from the roof of a two-storey building home to several different businesses. Those on the upper portion, where the fire was initially concentrated, include Divine Alchemy Tattoos, A Thing of Beauty lingerie, and a pottery studio. Busaba Thai Cafe and Aldo’s Cleaners are on the lower level, fronting Victoria Street.

Assistant fire chief Mike Daloise said in a news release that they received a call at around 5:20 p.m. of a fire in the ceiling of a bathroom. When crews arrived, they confirmed everyone was out of the building.

“The fire extended to the ceiling space and an aggressive interior attack was initiated,” Daloise said. “The structure had undergone extensive renovations and modifications that made accessing the area where the fire had travelled to very challenging.”

The fire damaged the roof badly enough that firefighters decided that trying to tackle it from inside was no longer safe, so they retreated to a defensive, exterior attack. The fire department’s aerial truck was used to try to get water into the attic space to prevent it from spreading to the businesses below.

In all, 24 firefighters responded with two engines, one tender, the ladder truck, and two utility vehicles. There were no injuries. The cause is under investigation.

At 9 p.m. crews were trying to access some hot spots to completely put out the fire. Daloise said there is “significant” damage to the roof and part of the upper floor, with smoke and water damage throughout the building.

Although joined together, the building has two different street addresses: 524 Victoria and 602 Josephine. BC Assessment indicates the latter was constructed in 1899. Civic directories suggest both addresses were once separate homes.

A concrete fire wall separates the building from its neighbour to the west on Victoria Street.

Smoke could be seen and smelled from throughout the city.

Among the casualties of the fire were a number of grad dresses reportedly at the dry cleaner. Resident Sherry Perry has started a drive to collect replacements.

“I am currently putting together an album of pictures of available dresses both for loan and for give away,” she wrote on Facebook. “I hope to have collected all donated and loaned dresses by Friday afternoon.”

L.V. Rogers has its grad cavalcade on Saturday.

The fire is the third in three days in Nelson. On Tuesday morning, a home in Fairview was destroyed and another damaged, while another fire broke out Tuesday afternoon in an apartment on Ward Street.

A fire in Castlegar last week believed to have been deliberately set also destroyed two homes. A suspect has been arrested in that blaze.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Nelson cyclist run over by truck

Driver ticketed for failing to yield right of way on left turn

Interior Health will not expand Police and Crisis Team

Southeast Division Chief Superintendent Brad Haugli asked IH to expand the program

Hwy 1 flooding causes massive delays on certain Arrow Lakes ferry routes

Motorists have been waiting around three hours to get on ferries

RDCK: spring flooding financial relief available

The provincial funds are for those affected by flooding in May and early June

Pamela Allain, Laura Gellatly join the Nelson Star

Allain oversees Black Press’s West Kootenay papers, while Gellatly is the Star’s new publisher

PHOTOS: B.C.’s top doc picks up personalized Fluevog shoes, tours mural exhibition

Murals of Gratitude exhibit includes at least one portrait of Henry alongside paintings of health-care workers

In troubled times: Independence Day in a land of confusion

Buffeted by invisible forces and just plain worn out, the United States of America celebrates its 244th birthday

Stop enforcing sex work laws during COVID-19, advocates say

There are provisions in Canada’s prostitution laws that make workers immune from prosecution, but not from arrest

Liberal party finished 2019 having spent $43 million, raised $42 million

All political parties had until midnight June 30 to submit their financial reports for last year

B.C. teacher loses licence after sexual relationships with two recently-graduated students

The teacher won’t be allowed to apply for a teaching certificate until 2035

White-throated sparrows have changed their tune, B.C. study unveils

Study marks an unprecedented development scientists say has caused them to sit up and take note

Alberta health minister orders review into response after noose found in hospital in 2016

A piece of rope tied into a noose was found taped to the door of an operating room at the Grande Prairie Hospital in 2016

B.C.’s major rivers surge, sparking flood warnings

A persistent low pressure system over Alberta has led to several days of heavy rain

Most Read