The Vancouver Fire Rescue Services (VFRS) says over 50 fires have broke out across the city in the past few days and the overwhelming majority caused damage.
Firefighters responded to 46 fires over the weekend and 40 of them caused damage. Fires that cause damage are considered any that include "appreciable damage and a dollar loss assigned to it," VFRS spokesperson Matthew Trudeau told V.I.A.
"This may include a City of Vancouver garbage can lit on fire to a house or unit on fire," he explained. "These fires have damages and loss associated with them."
On Sunday (March 12) night, Vancouver fire crews also discovered the body of a woman inside a tent in the Downtown Eastside when they arrived at the scene of a fire.
Trudeau said the death was "unrelated to the tent fire" and the crew immediately notified the Vancouver Police Department (VPD).
Vancouver firefighters responded to multiple fires
Firefighters also attended six other blazes over the weekend that didn’t include damage.
"These can be open flames on a sidewalk or noncombustible surface that our crews responded to and put out," he said.
On Tuesday night, fire crews responded to and contained three separate fires, including one on the 500 block of Prior Street that they shared photos of on Twitter. The cause of the blaze is still under investigation.
Three separate fires last night contained by fire crews. This one on the 500BLK of Prior Street. Still under investigation. pic.twitter.com/uuoiQybGW0— Vancouver Fire Rescue Services (@VanFireRescue) March 15, 2023
In April 2022, a massive fire that destroyed a historic building in Gastown sparked concern about safety in Vancouver's SRO residences. Since then, the VFRS says it continues to grapple with fires in units located in high-risk buildings.
"It's a big problem and a big priority and we continue to go to [these kinds of fires] often," said Trudeau.