The Victoria Fire Department extinguished a small brush fire in Beacon Hill Park Wednesday morning.
Deputy Chief Dan Atkinson said the department was called to the minor fire around 10:45 a.m. and arrived to find the blaze burning behind Goodacre Lake, close to Arbutus Way. Crews were able to put out the blaze by about 11:10 a.m. There were no injuries.
Atkinson said a preliminary investigation indicates improperly discarded smoking materials may have started the fire.
A community of people who are homeless are living in the park. Earlier this year hundreds were displaced by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It would be hard to say that [the fire] would be directly related or correlated to that kind of activity,” Atkinson said. “We have seen a significant increase in illegal burning activity in and around the area.”
Because access points are limited, fire crews had to use about 300 metres of hose to access the fire from the park’s roadways, Atkinson said.
“The big thing here is, it speaks to the need for people to be responsible with using the park,” he said. “We’re in a dry season. Use the park respectfully.”
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