UPDATE: Man arrested for arson; fire set at Royal Jubilee Hospital

A 36-year-old man was arrested Tuesday (Feb. 22) for arson, as well as failing to comply with a probation order from a previous conviction, in connection to a fire set a Royal Jubilee Hospital last week.

The flames were deliberately set in the old emergency room department at the Royal Jubilee Hospital on Friday, Feb. 18.

Two major crime detectives were assigned to investigate the stretcher bed fire. Daniel Charles Sutherland was arrested and held in police custody. He is known to police in the region and has a long criminal history, including previous arson convictions.

That it was a case of arson is a cause for concern for health authorities. “There are, at any given time, hundreds of patients and staff and our job is to make sure they are safe and secure,” Suzanne Germain, spokesperson for Vancouver Island Health Authority, said on Monday.

Victoria firefighters were alerted by alarm around 10 p.m. Upon arrival, they doused the mattress and bedding of a stretcher in a first-floor room at the back of the old emergency ward where the stretcher beds are stored.

About 30 patients on the second and third floors directly above were evacuated to other areas of the hospital as a precaution. They were brought back to the general medical care floors on Sunday.

“Certainly from the staff perspective the need to move some 30 patients in short order is always a stressful experience,” Germain explained. “It went remarkably well.”

The old section of the hospital where the fire broke out is slated for demolition in 2012, and the closest inhabited medical office – a tuberculosis clinic – is not open on weekends.

Heat damage was contained to one stretcher and some adjoining equipment. “The fire wasn’t hot enough to trigger the sprinkler system,” Germain said.

emccracken@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Saanich wants bunkers to be off limits for cannabis growing

Saanich looks to block cement bunkers on ALR farmland

UPDATE: Missing Langford teen found safe

The 13-year-old Langford boy reported missing Wednesday has been found

Victoria police seize over one kilo of fentanyl, guns and cars

Andrew Ritch is facing charges of drug trafficking and firearm offences

Fire chief stops driving lesson to fight fire

Sooke fire concerned over second suspicious bin fire this year

Tour de Victoria rolls through the region Saturday

Expect traffic delays across Greater Victoria on Aug. 18

B.C. wildfires 2018: Hazy skies impacting crews in spotting new fires

18,000 people are on an evacuation alert, with 3,000 homes under an evacuation order

Minister optimistic after 2 days of Columbia River Treaty negotiations

Canadian and U.S. officials met in Nelson Wednesday and Thursday to discuss future of the treaty

Man dies in B.C. police cell while awaiting court hearing

An independent investigation is underway after a man died while in Penticton police custody Aug. 16

RCMP appeal for tips, dashcam footage in German tourist shooting west of Calgary

The Durango crashed into the ditch after the shooting near the Goodstoney Rodeo Centre

2 nurses attacked at B.C. psych hospital, union calls for in-unit security

PHSA says that in-unit guards would do more harm than good

Former B.C. optician won’t be jailed for sexually assaulting minor

Kenneth Pilkington sentenced to 24 months’ probation for offence three decades ago

Red Cross now accepting donations for those impacted by B.C. wildfires

The Canadian Red Cross is asking for help now and in the weeks and months ahead.

B.C. program to educate parents reduces ‘shaken baby syndrome’ by 35%

Period of PURPLE Crying was launched nearly a decade ago

UPDATED: Vancouver Island community under evacuation alert due to wildfire

BC Wildfire Service says steep terrain near Zeballos poses challenge as “out of control” wildfire approaches homes

Most Read