COCHRANE— The Cochrane RCMP continue to seek the public’s assistance with its investigation into the 2018 structure fire that tore through several under-construction townhouses in the Fireside neighbourhood.
The fire, which occurred at approximately 2:20 a.m. on June 6, 2018, was so large it damaged vehicles and homes across the street from the construction site where the blaze occurred.
Initial estimates indicated the fire caused upwards of $2 million in damages.
At the time of the fire The Cochrane Eagle reported 12 single-family dwellings were damaged, two multi-family buildings still under construction were destroyed, one multi-family building next to it suffered extensive damage and one multi-family building to the east of the destroyed buildings had exterior damage. As well, there was one work trailer damaged, nine vehicles and one forklift damaged.
Public input for cases like this is very important to the efforts made by the RMCP and can help police determine any behaviour or activity that appears out of place, said Const. Jennifer Brewer.
“It’s huge. We can go up and look for whatever it is that we may consider evidence, but the people that live there know what’s supposed to be there. They know the people that live in the area, they know what vehicles are supposed to be around,” she said. “It’s really huge for us to have the community involvement because they know exactly what belongs and what doesn’t.”
The RCMP continues to investigate, although they have not made the determination as to whether or not the fires were intentionally started or an accident.
“We still haven’t been able to determine that, that’s another reason that we need the community’s help,” Brewer said. “It’s suspicious in the fact that we can’t figure out how it started either. There’s a lot that goes into making fires suspicious, and fires are always difficult to investigate because everything gets destroyed, but again, that’s where the community gets involved.”