Three buses were destroyed and another damaged after a bus fire at the Mid Island lot on Tzouhalem Road early Friday morning. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)

UPDATED: Five school buses destroyed in suspicious early morning fire

Firefighters and RCMP arrived at the Mid Island Bus lot on Tzouhalem Road early Friday morning to find three buses engulfed in flames.

Two more were damaged beyond repair.

Firefighters from North Cowichan’s South End hall arrived just after 4 a.m. and extinguished the blaze.

Mounties requested a crew again for a flare-up around 7 a.m.

“The tires got going underneath,” explained South End Hall deputy chief Brad Coleman. He and a small crew returned to douse the hot spots while bus drivers arriving for work for the day looked on.

A spokesperson for Mid Island Bus said he company is “deeply saddened” to learn about the fire.

The company provides pick-up and drop-off school bus services for Queen of Angels School and Duncan Christian School.

“Five of our school buses were lost, they were damaged beyond repair,” the spokesperson said in an email. “We are definitely very thankful for the support of the community, the RCMP, and the firefighters who came to extinguish the fires.”

The show will go on, however.

“We are busy at this point working with our schools to ensure all the children continue to get back and forth to school safely,” said the email. “The situation is heartbreaking but we are incredibly grateful that no one was hurt, thankful for the community support and the generous offers of temporary replacement buses from other local schools.”

RCMP detachment commander Insp. Chris Bear said his officers are investigating, calling the blaze suspicious.

“This matter remains under active investigation in determining the cause of the fire,” Bear said. “Police are requesting anyone who may have seen or heard anything to contact the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP detachment.”

Those with information can call 250-748-5522 or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (6477).



sarah.simpson@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Two of Chemainus photographer Marston’s images picked among National Geographic’s 2018 elite

Rare double honour from the 36 best Your Shots out of nearly 19,000 photos

Strong winds up to 100 km/h for parts of Vancouver Island

Wind warning in effect for north, east and west Vancouver Island into Saturday morning

Prolific offender arrested in “dynamic takedown” in Crofton

Lower Mainland man facing at least six charges

Swing Shift an enthusiastic collection of professional and amateur musicians

School visits by the band keeping the jazz tradition alive with young people

VIDEO: U.S. Congress to probe whether Trump told lawyer Cohen to lie

At issue is a BuzzFeed News report that about negotiations over a Moscow real estate project

Rookie Demko backstops Canucks to 4-3 win over Sabres

Young Vancouver goalie makes 36 saves to turn away Buffalo

Charges upgraded against mother of murdered B.C. girl

Kerryann Lewis now faces first- rather than second-degree murder in the death of Aaliyah Rosa.

UPDATE: Injured firefighter in stable condition

Kelowna fire crews responded to a blaze at Pope’sGallery of BC Art & Photography on Friday

Rare ‘super blood wolf moon’ takes to the skies this Sunday

Celestial event happens only three times this century

Arrest made after historic B.C. church hit by arson

The fire at the 150-year-old Murray United Church in Merritt was considered a possible hate crime

B.C. dangerous offender in court for violating no-contact order, sends letter to victim

Wayne Belleville was shocked to see a letter addressed to him from his shooter, Ronald Teneycke

Man blames his loud car radio, sirens for crash with B.C. ambulance

Tribunal rejects bid to recoup ICBC costs after crash deemed 100-per-cent his fault

Ferry from Port Hardy to Bella Coola expected to set sail this summer

Its first in-service route will sail in central coast waters on May 18, 2019.

Most Read