VIDEO: Firefighters battle early morning apartment building blaze in Victoria

Three floors of a Victoria apartment building go up in flames the morning of Jan. 11. (Courtesy Alex Robb)Three floors of a Victoria apartment building go up in flames the morning of Jan. 11. (Courtesy Alex Robb)
Victoria firefighters were called to an apartment fire in a building in the 1100-block of Fort Street. (Photo courtesy of Chris Boughton)Victoria firefighters were called to an apartment fire in a building in the 1100-block of Fort Street. (Photo courtesy of Chris Boughton)
A Victoria firefighter works to block off a section of a Fort Street apartment building following an early morning fire Jan. 11. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)A Victoria firefighter works to block off a section of a Fort Street apartment building following an early morning fire Jan. 11. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
The charred siding of a multi-storey building after crews were called to a fire on Fort Street in Victoria the morning of Jan. 11. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)The charred siding of a multi-storey building after crews were called to a fire on Fort Street in Victoria the morning of Jan. 11. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
The lights remain on inside the charred units of a Fort Street apartment building scorched by a fire the morning of Jan. 11. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)The lights remain on inside the charred units of a Fort Street apartment building scorched by a fire the morning of Jan. 11. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
Victoria firefighters were called to an apartment fire in a building in the 1100-block of Fort Street. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)Victoria firefighters were called to an apartment fire in a building in the 1100-block of Fort Street. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
The lights remain on inside the charred units of a Fort Street apartment building scorched by a fire the morning of Jan. 11. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)The lights remain on inside the charred units of a Fort Street apartment building scorched by a fire the morning of Jan. 11. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)

Ursula Dyck was just waking up for the day when she heard the fire alarm sound in her Victoria apartment building.

First, she figured it was a false alarm, Dyck told Black Press Media, then she peeked in the hall.

It was so smoky she couldn’t see. She grabbed a wet cloth and made her way out of the apartment building in the 1100-block of View Street.

The Victoria Fire Department was on the scene quickly the morning of Jan. 11, and by the time Dyck got out around 7:20 a.m., firefighters were dousing the blaze.

Other residents are also praising the department after the morning blaze left them on the street watching firefighters work on their homes.

Pasang McDuff also waited a few minutes to leave his apartment, feeling it might be a false alarm.

He ran out, then went back for jackets to offer to fellow residents.

“(Victoria Fire) got here really quickly and within a few minutes it was out,” McDuff said.

Battalion Chief Doug Carey said the department received the call around 7 a.m. When crews arrived, there was fire coming from the suite above the carport and flames were rolling up to the second and third floors above, Carey said.

“The two residents from the involved suite actually leaped off the balcony when they discovered the fire, and sought a safe place to go,” he added. They, and all other residents, have been accounted for.

The department is still investigating the cause of the fire and the full extent of the damage, but Carey said the fire damage has been contained to the three front suites. Water damage is likely in surrounding ones.

View Street between Ormond and Cook streets remained closed to traffic as of 9 a.m. as firefighters remain on scene.

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