British Columbia·Photos

Drug investigators take over after suspicious explosion in Aldergrove B.C.

RCMP drug investigators have taken over the case of a suspicious explosion and fire in Aldergrove B.C. early Wednesday morning that sent two men to hospital with severe burns.

Several people and pets escaped the blaze, but 2 were sent to hospital with serious burns

Flames started tearing through the roof early Wednesday morning, after hours of firefighting efforts. (Gian-Paolo Mendoza/CBC)

RCMP drug investigators have taken over the case of a suspicious explosion and fire in Aldergrove B.C. early Wednesday morning that sent two men to hospital with severe burns.

Police suspect there may have been an "butane extraction site" set up in the garage of the townhouse complex in the Aldergrove area of Langley, B.C.

Butane flame can be used in a drug lab to extract oil from marijuana.

Township of Langley fire crews were called to the Creekside Estates in the 27100-block of 31A Avenue around 12:30 a.m. Wednesday, after multiple people phoned 911 with reports of an explosion and a large fire in the building.

"Because of the explosion the damage to this building is very extreme," said Deputy Fire Chief Bruce Ferguson. "It does appear suspicious in nature."

Ferguson said the three-alarm fire displaced three other families.

Police are now waiting for a structural engineer to determine if re-entry is safe. Counselling is being provided for the people affected by the explosion.

Firefighters helped save five pet cats from the fire. (Gian-Paolo Mendoza/CBC)

Cats rescued from fire

Candace Muller escaped the fire with her husband and several of their pets.

"I looked and there was great big shooting flames coming out of the garage next door. It was huge," said Muller, who said she has lived in the building for around 30 years.

"I was terrified ... but we got away as quickly as we could."

Muller said she grabbed her three pet ferrets first because they're small. (Gian-Paolo Mendoza/CBC)

Muller said she was thankful the fire department went back inside to rescue her pet cats, Romeo, Dakota, Draco, Coda and Muesli.

"They seem to be doing okay," she said. "Coda not so much … he's hiding down there at the foot of the truck cause he's terrified."

Officials would not comment on the cause of the fire, but said it appears suspicious. (Gian-Paolo Mendoza/CBC)