Province inspects Victoria homeless camp for fire hazards

People living in a controversial homeless camp in Victoria are waiting to hear if they will be heading back to court after the province conducted a fire inspection on Wednesday.

Province could head back to court to seek injunction if safety is deemed at risk

Campers and advocates at the homeless camp in Victoria have been working to define pathways and clear out flammable materials ahead of a fire inspection. (Megan Thomas)

People living in a controversial homeless camp in Victoria are waiting to hear if they will be heading back to court after the province conducted a fire inspection Wednesday. 

The province sought an injunction in April to remove the camp, but was unsuccessful. However, it can go back to court if it feels safety and security have deteriorated. 

Campers and advocates for the homeless gave an official from the Office of the Fire Commissioner a tour of the tent city.

The campers and advocates have been working to define pathways and clear out flammable materials, but there are still more than 100 structures crowded onto the site.

Advocate Chrissy Brett says it's unrealistic to expect a homeless camp to meet fire safety standards.

"Tents aren't made to live in. They're made to camp in. So there's never going to be a completely safe way to live in a tent," she said.

Concerns over crime

In recent weeks there has been growing concern from police and neighbours about an increase in crime at the camp.

This week two officers have been patrolling the area around the camp each day following safety complaints from neighbours in the area.

Victoria police said one of those officers was injured Tuesday during an arrest. They declined to specify the nature of her injuries, citing privacy concerns. 

The province has not yet said when it will make a decision about going back to court.