Playground set ablaze at Saanich’s Copley Park

Saanich police, fire investigating fire after Saturday night suspicious fire

Sandy Fallow

With the wave of her magic wand, three-year old Ella Fallow hoped to repair the upper landing of her favourite playground. Ella was in tears when she and her father, Sandy, made their regular visit on Sunday (June 28), and found a considerable portion of the Copley Park playground blackened and melted from fire.

“We’re regular visitors to this playground almost every morning. Ella was devastated,” Sandy said.

Both Saanich Fire and Police responded to the fire on the weekend after calls came in around 11 p.m. on Saturday. The playground is located in Copley Park East, about 150 metres along the trail that begins in the 600-block of Vanalman Ave.

The fire centred around the upper landing of the playground structure. The structure is again in usable condition as Saanich Parks staff made repairs first-thing on Monday morning, reinforcing it while also cleaning up the residual fire retardant.

The fire appears to have been deliberately set, said Saanich Police Sgt. Steve Eassie.

“It (also) appears to be an isolated incident at this point. However, investigators seized evidence … which could help them connect it to another fire,” Eassie said.

Eassie said the call came from a witness who saw the fire from the road after they exited a BC Transit bus.

“It’s helpful when citizens are vigilant and respond to fires right away. Obviously, the fire could have been widespread in these conditions,” Eassie added.

Saanich Fire Battalion Chief Dave Elder said there’s a spike in the number of small fires being reported right now, a direct result of the current heat wave.

“Some are brush fires, the nature of things such as (dry) bark mulch (is contributing to that),” Elder said.

It’s been three weeks since Saanich’s June 11 brush fire that devastated Camrose Park and threatened multiple houses along Maplewood Road and Camrose Crescent.

The result of the Camrose fire likely will not be determined, Eassie said, though investigators are able to conclude, with little doubt, that the Copley playground fire was arson.

“Why would someone choose to get their kicks doing something like this,” Sandy said.

“Maybe it was just an end-of-school (party) prank that went wrong. But we just moved here (from Victoria) a month ago, and we have to ask, ‘Is there an arsonist in this area?’”

reporter@saanichnews.com

 

 

Just Posted

More than 300 teens take to the polls at Mount Douglas Secondary for mock federal election

‘This is a pretty engaged generation,’ says Mount Douglas Secondary social studies teacher

Access: A day in the life using a wheelchair in Victoria

Black Press Media teamed up with the Victoria Disability Resource Centre to learn about barriers

Popular food truck to open restaurant on Oak Bay Avenue

Dead Beetz Burgers adds brick-and-mortar restaurant

CRD aims to reduce solid waste going to Hartland Landfill by a third by 2030

District launches public engagement campaign for waste reduction strategies

Lieutenant Governor Janet Austin receives first poppy in Legion-led ceremony

The ceremony is one of the first steps to kick off the 2019 poppy campaign

VIDEO: Explosion, fire sends woman running from Saanich home

Heavy smoke in the area, crews on scene

Zantac, the over-the-counter heartburn drug, pulled in Canada, U.S.

Health Canada also investigates possible carcinogen in some ranitidine drugs

B.C. public safety minister says cannabis edibles not in stores til January

Mike Farnworth says he wants regional issues considered when it comes to licensing

POLL: Do you think the day of the federal election should be a statutory holiday?

Increasing voter turnout has long been a goal of officials across the… Continue reading

Greta Thunberg calls for climate action in Alberta, but doesn’t talk oilsands

Swedish teen was met with some oil and gas industry supporters who came in a truck convoy

Scheer denies spreading ‘misinformation’ in predicting unannounced Liberal taxes

Conservative leader had claimed that a potential NDP-Liberal coalition could lead to a hike in GST

Chilliwack man pleads guilty in crash that killed pregnant woman

Frank Tessman charged under Motor Vehicle Act for accident that killed Kelowna school teacher

Kawhi Leonard, former Toronto Raptor, welcomed back to Vancouver at pre-season game

Fans go wild at pre-season game between L.A. Clippers and Dallas Mavericks at Rogers Arena

Greens and NDP go head to head on West Coast; Scheer takes fight to Bernier

Trudeau turns focus to key ridings outside Toronto after two days in Quebec

Most Read