Firefighters extinguish 7 structure fires over weekend, City of Winnipeg says

The Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service responded to a total of seven structure fires so far this weekend with firefighters putting out one fire early Sunday morning, a spokesperson from the City of Winnipeg said. 

Fire crews found “heavy smoke” and flames billowing from a two-storey multi-family residence at the corner of William Avenue and Ellen Street in Winnipeg’s centennial neighbourhood, according to a city news release sent Sunday morning.

Firefighters arrived at the scene shortly after 5:35 a.m. on Sunday. Crews could not enter the building to attack the fire because it was too dangerous, the city said. 

The vacant building was significantly damaged and is considered a  “complete loss,” the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service said. 

The residence also suffered significant damage from a previous fire in June last year. 

A house shows burned shingles on a roof.
The two-storey multi-family residence located on William Avenue and Ellen Street in Winnipeg’s centennial neighbourhood suffered ‘significant’ damage after it erupted in flames on Sunday morning, firefighters said. (Darin Morash/ CBC)

William avenue, between Ellen Street and Gertie Street is closed to traffic and will reopen once the demolition is finished, fire crews said. 

At 9:39 p.m. on Saturday, firefighters received a report of a fire in a vacant three-storey apartment complex on Balmoral and Qu’Appelle Avenue, a release said on Sunday. 

Crews were able to fight the fire from the inside of the building and got it under control around 10:27 p.m. 

On Saturday, the fire service also received a report of a fire in a two-and-a-half-storey residence on Charles Street and Magnus Avenue at 4:24 a.m.

Firefighters evacuated residents of the building and “quickly” extinguished the fire, the city said. 

Two fires on Pritchard

The Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service said they also responded to two fires on Pritchard Avenue this weekend.

At 5:42 a.m. Saturday, crews arrived at a single-family bungalow on Pritchard Avenue at Sheppard Street.

Heavy smoke and flames could be seen coming from the house and it wasn’t extinguished until 6:51 a.m. 

Firefighters said the residents of the home safely evacuated before they arrived at the scene. Crews evacuated one neighbouring house as a temporary precaution. 

The home suffered “significant” smoke, fire and water damage, the city said. 

One police vehicle and one firetruck can be seen outside a home.
Winnipeg police officers and Winnipeg Fire and Paramedic Service crews can be seen outside a home on Pritchard Avenue and Sheppard Street after a fire on Saturday. (Gavin Axelrod / CBC)

On Friday evening, an on-duty police officer driving through the area called firefighters to Pritchard Avenue near Salter Street, and they arrived at a two-storey residence at 11:43 p.m. That fire was extinguished around 12:49 a.m. 

Earlier Friday, at 8 p.m., fire crews arrived to a vacant single-story house on Burrows Avenue near Salter Street, where they found flames and smoke coming out of the house.

They started by extinguishing the fire from the exterior before it was safe to enter the residence and completely put out the fire by 8:28 p.m., the city said. 

In those six fires, no injuries were reported, and the cause of each fire is under investigation.

Clothing dryer fire

WFPS crews put out a fire involving a clothing dryer at one of the suites in a two-storey townhouse complex around 9:30 a.m. on Saturday. 

Firefighters fought the fire at Rougeau Avenue and Bournais Drive and determined the fire was accidental and a “malfunction in the operation of a clothes dryer,” the city said in a news release. 

People in the suite were able to safely evacuate from the unit before crews came to the scene. 

Firefighters said there were no injuries reported. 

WFPS said in a statement fires involving clothing dryers can be prevented by:

  • Having a dryer installed and serviced by a worker.
  • Making sure the lint filter is always cleaned before use.
  • Periodically checking the venting system to make sure there is no lint buildup or damage. 
  • Making sure the outdoor vent flap is open when the dryer is running.
  • Never leave the dryer running when leaving the home.