Langley RCMP have issued an arrest warrant for Andre Harvey Richard in connection with an apparent attempted murder and arson at a house in the Willowbrook area of Langley, B.C., early Wednesday morning.

Saturn relay

Richard is believed to be driving a Saturn Relay 2006 Grey Saturn Relay passenger minivan with B.C. licence plate 804 HWC. (Langley RCMP)

Cpl. Holly Marks said Richard is wanted specifically for breaching the condition that he not contact his wife.

Marks said earlier that the estranged husband of the woman was being sought after she was attacked and the house she shares with her two children was set on fire.

The 44-year-old Langley man is believed to be driving a 2006 grey Saturn Relay passenger minivan with B.C. licence plate 804 HWC.

The woman and her two children were taken to hospital after escaping the fire that gutted their home in the 19600 block of  Wakefield Drive just after 1 a.m. PT.

Police said a man broke into the home and allegedly set the fire before going into the woman's bedroom and assaulting her with a weapon.

Marks said it was a violent assault.

"The mother was hit in and about the head with a weapon and sustained some fairly significant lacerations, and she remains in hospital at this point," said Marks.

"The daughter who attempted to intervene was also struck with the weapon."

Langley fire attempted murder

The mother and her two children escaped this blaze and ran to a neighbour's home. (CBC)

"When the assault was taking place, the 14-year-old daughter came into the room to tell her mother that she could smell smoke, and witnessed the father assaulting her," Marks said.

The mother, her 14-year-old daughter and eight-year-old son managed to escape, running outside to a neighbour’s house before their home was engulfed in flames.​

Their injuries are reported to be non-life-threatening.

CBC News has learned the estranged wife had been in family court the previous day.

Marks said police didn't know at first what happened to the assailant and thought he might have died in the fire.

Fire crews did a preliminary search for the man in the burned home, but weren't able to complete a full search until later in the day when the structure cooled down.

Just after 11:30 a.m., Langley RCMP announced that no body had been found inside the house, and that the man is presumed to have fled.

Google map: 19600 Wakefield Dr., Langley

With files from the CBC's Tim Weekes and Farrah Merali