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Video: 'Total loss' after fire at Vermillion Lake Rd. home

No fire hydrants in area, so fire department had to draw water from lake

A fire at a vacant two-storey home on Vermillion Lake Road Wednesday afternoon caused about $250,000 in damages, or what Platoon Chief Andre Groulx calls a “total loss.”

Greater Sudbury Fire Services were called out at around 2:15 p.m. May 17, and five stations — Vermillion Lake, Levack, Dowling, Chelmsford and downtown Sudbury — responded.

“There's no hydrant in that area, so we had to draw water from the lake,” said Groulx. “We had a tanker shuttle set up.”

While the home was vacant, a tenant who was supposed to move in June 1 was fixing up the building. He was outside when the fire occurred, so was not injured.

Al Beland, who's lived 10 houses down from the house that burned for the past 28 years, said he was visiting a friend at a neighbouring house when they saw smoke. His friend just happens to be Gilles Groulx, who heads up the Vermillion Lake station. Beland said while Groulx rallied the fire service, he went to check if anyone was in the burning home.

"The renter was going through the house pulling things out, so I stopped him," Beland said.

They then noticed the heat from the fire was melting the siding on a neighbouring home.

"So we ran up to the door (and) knocked," he said. "No answer, but (we) heard dogs, so we let them out right away."

That's when the owners of that home showed up. It was about at that time that the fire department arrived. They were able to save the neighbouring home, but the house where the fire began was completely lost.

The cause of the fire is undetermined, and the fire department is investigating, Groulx said. 

Vermillion Lake Road runs west from Highway 144 along the shore of Vermillion Lake, near Chelmsford.

Heidi Ulrichsen

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