Woman deceased in Cumberland house fire Wednesday

Police and fire personnel were called to the scene of a fire at a home in Cumberland, Wednesday afternoon.

According to investigators, an 85-year-old woman perished.

“At approximately 5 p.m. we got a call about a structure fire,” said Cumberland Fire Chief Mike Williamson. “A lady had come to visit [the tenant] and saw a lot of smoke so she called 9-1-1. We showed up fairly quickly… there was one person in the building who was deceased.”

At that point, Comox Valley RCMP were called in.

“We don’t know the cause of the fire but… it started in the kitchen area,” said Williamson. “The fire burns up and then it runs out of oxygen so it completely fills the place with black smoke and puts itself out. When we enter it adds oxygen to it, and it could flare back up, which it did, but the boys were right on top of it when it did that, so it was easily extinguished. But the back windows were all cracked and it was ready to re-ignite.

Williamson said the entire interior of the house was damaged in the fire.

The victim was deceased by the time firefighters arrived on scene. It is unclear at this point whether she died because of the fire, or if the fire started after she died, but RCMP have ruled out foul play.

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Police and fire department personnel investigate the scene of a fatal fire in Cumberland on Wednesday evening, Oct. 23, 2019. Photo by Erin Haluschak

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