Occupy Saint John tents catch fire
Police and fire officials in Saint John are investigating a fire at the Occupy Saint John site in which two tents were destroyed.
Two tents at King's Square caught fire at around 4:45 a.m. on Sunday, but no one was inside.
District Fire Chief Joe Armstrong said the fire was put out quickly and he said there was no risk of the fire spreading.
"There was only one tent occupied there last night, it was away from that scene, so people in the tent were not in any danger at any time."
Dorian Venne has been camping at the park for the past few weeks, with a handful of other Occupy protesters.
He said the tents were storing food, donations and supplies.
"We lost a lot of stuff, like blankets, most of our sleeping stuff that we would use if other stuff got wet, there was dry stuff that was the backup," Venne said Sunday.
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"So all the stuff that was dry got burnt and our cooking utensils, pretty much everything we use on a daily basis is gone."
He suspects the fire was set on purpose as a scare tactic.
"Rather than forcing us out, maybe someone just decided to set fire to our stuff and that [they thought] 'hopefully they don't have food, blankets, so they won't have anything,'" Venne said.
He said there was a strong kerosene odour Sunday morning and he noted the tents seemed to be burning at the same rate.
Fire officials say it's too early in the investigation to say whether the fire was set deliberately.