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VIDEO: Smoky morning with fires in Esquimalt, Victoria

Smoke engulfed a Fernwood neighbourhood home after an Esquimalt industrial fire Tuesday morning

Greater Victoria firefighters had a busy start Tuesday.

The morning started with a fire in an industrial building on Devonshire Road in Esquimalt. The fire broke out inside Michael Mason & Co. Ltd. early Tuesday morning. The owner called 911 around 6 a.m. after arriving and seeing the smoke, said Esquimalt Fire Chief Steve Serbic. Crews from Esquimalt and CFB Esquimalt arrived shortly after to find heavy smoke coming from the roof of the building.

Inside, they found fire in the walls and roof of the warehouse, which was filled with plastic signage, making it more difficult to battle the blaze.

It took crews about an hour and a half to fully extinguish the fire.

The upper floor of the building was heavily damaged while the lower floor suffered mostly smoke damage. An investigation into the cause will continue later.

No injuries were reported and traffic was diverted away from the 800-block of Devonshire Road while crews were on scene.

A little later in the morning, Victoria crews responded to a residential kitchen fire in the 2000-block of Cook Street at 7:42 a.m. The incident occurred from a cooking or electrical error that Battalion Chief Tim Loewen said is still under investigation.

“When we arrived, there was heavy smoke from the structure,” Loewen said. The fire caused extensive damage to the street-facing, second-floor kitchen of the multi-unit building.

The resident of the unit, whom Loewen believed initially reported the fire, left the scene before Victoria Fire Department’s arrival.

Victoria police closed Cook Street between Princess and Caledonia avenues for the safety of firefighters. Although Loewen couldn’t say when Victoria Fire Department’s work in the area would be finished, a single lane of traffic was expected to reopen around 9 a.m.

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