Story by Troy Landreville

COMOX, B.C. – Dozens of firefighters responded to a major house fire near the intersection of Robb Avenue and Rodello  Street tonight.

Fire Chief Gord Schreiner said just after 8:30 p.m., Comox Fire Rescue received a call about a fully involved structure fire involving a single family home.

The house is likely “totaled,” according to Schreiner.

“Upon arrival it was very showy, lots of flames, the fir trees in the backyard were ‘candling,’ so we probably had flames 60, 80 feet in the air,” Schreiner told at the scene.

The fire spread to a couple of sheds on neighbouring properties, and witnesses reported hearing explosions.

Schreiner said the explosions were “probably going to be propane cylinders going off from barbecues and things like that.”

Comox firefighters happened to be at a practice site at a nearby school when the call came in.

“We had a very robust response,” said Schreiner, who noted that two members of the Oyster River Fire Department also responded to the call.

“We had everything from Comox here,” Schreiner said. “Two engines, two rescues and Oyster River’s tanker, and about 35 to 40 people on scene.”

While the fire was focused on one home, neighbouring homes may be damaged as well.

Upwards of 50 people had to temporarily leave their homes for a short period as firefighters battled the blaze.

One firefighter was treated for smoke inhalation but other than that, there were no other injuries reported at this time.

It’s too early to determine the cause of the blaze.

Schreiner said whatever it was, it was fairly aggressive.

Fire crews were still on scene at 10:15 p.m.

More to come as information becomes available.

-with files from James Wood