Downtown Victoria fire deemed suspicious – Victoria News

Downtown Victoria fire deemed \suspicious\ - Victoria News
Major crimes unit deems downtown Victoria hotel fire suspicious
Fire officials at the scene of the former Plaza Hotel on Tuesday, May 14, 2019. (CTV Vancouver Island)

More than a week since flames ripped through Victorias former Plaza Hotel building, police are calling the fire suspicious.

On Monday afternoon, police received a search warrant for the property located on Pandora Avenue in the heart of downtown Victoria. Investigators from Victoria police and the fire department were on the site Monday and will be there for a few weeks.

Police and fire investigators began their search of the rubble Monday in an attempt to determine the cause of the May 6 blaze that levelled the four-storey building at the corner of Government Street and Pandora Avenue.

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"Our investigators, along with the Victoria Fire Departments investigators, were on the site yesterday, and will be there for up to a few weeks," Victoria police said Tuesday.

"These type of investigations are lengthy and an appropriate amount of resources will be dedicated to investigate the origin of the fire." 

Firefighters were called to the Plaza Hotel on Government Street just before 5:30 a.m. and arrived to a fully involved fire. Officials said alarms at neighbouring properties went off, but not inside the vacant hotel.

The search for what caused the powerful inferno was put on hold as firefighters fought the flames for four days. 

A Colwood daycare was evacuated Tuesday after police responded to a nearby incident with their rifles drawn.

Victoria police detectives have joined fire investigators in probing a suspicious blaze that gutted the former Plaza Hotel last week.

VicPD Major Crime Unit detectives are working on the case, said spokesman Const. Matt Rutherford, in a news release this morning.

Police say they have been working closely with the fire department since the fire broke out at 603 Pandora Ave. on May 6.

Officers with the Victoria Police Department applied for and were granted a search warrant for the property yesterday afternoon, Rutherford said.

Our investigators, along with the Victoria Fire Departments investigators, were on the site yesterday, and will be there for up to a few weeks.

These type of investigations are lengthy and an appropriate amount of resources will be dedicated to investigate the origin of the fire, Rutherford said.

Meanwhile, the Victoria Fire Department is carrying on with its investigation into a fire that occurred over the weekend in a former nightclub on the 1300-block of Broad Street.