Manitoba

Two Winnipeg homes damaged in major house fire

Two homes in the 300 block on Union Avenue W. went up in flames at about 2 p.m. CST on Saturday.
Two homes in the 300 block on Union Avenue W. went up in flames on Saturday. (CBC) (CBC)

Winnipeg fire investigators are trying to find the cause of a major fire in Elmwood on Saturday.

A home in the 300 block on Union Avenue W. went up in flames at about 2 p.m. CST. Flames engulfed the structure and spread to the home next door. Nearly 20 fire trucks were called to the scene.

It was an emotional afternoon as many people in the neighbourhood watched in tears. Monique Bowman was in her yard when she smelled smoke and heard screaming.

"I saw a lot of dark smoke coming out of the top window, so I went and banged on the door and as I opened it all this black smoke came out," Bowman said. "This young family came out and we got them outside."

"Then I ran to the house next door," she said. "This man answered the door — he had his two kids — I told him, 'Get out, get out. There's a fire beside you. It's catching onto your house.'"

Both families got out safely, but a family dog is still missing.

Janneric Torres grew up in the home that caught fire first. Torres said his parents and siblings still live there.

"It's devastating cause we lived there since we got here from the Philippines — 13 years," Torres said. "A lot of memories in there."

Torres said the family has insurance and will be staying with him.

The owners of the other home to catch fire moved in a week ago.

Fire officials tell CBC damages are estimated at $175,000 to 319 Union Ave. and $100,000 to 317 Union Ave.

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