Trailer destroyed in Peace Arch RV Park fire

An afternoon fire engulfed a fifth-wheel trailer at the Peace Arch RV Park last weekend, reducing it to a charred mess.

"This thing burned like a pile of paper," owner Sam Naidu said as he surveyed the wreckage Tuesday morning. "There's nothing to be salvaged."

No one was injured in the blaze at the 14601 40 Ave. site, which Naidu reported around 3 p.m. Saturday.

Naidu, 56, said he was watching football when he noticed smoke lingering near the ceiling. When he ran outside to investigate, he could see the back of his fridge on fire, and flames shooting from the roof.

He and his neighbours tried to quell the blaze, but "it was too late," Naidu said. He only had time to grab his keys and wallet, and move his truck out of harm's way before the fire spread.

The fire sent thick black smoke billowing into the sky, where winds pulled it westward over King George Boulevard.

Park manager Lita Chow said surrounding residents had feared the heat could cause a 100-pound propane tank that fueled Naidu's trailer to explode. It was located just two metres from the trailer, Chow said.

"It can go up anytime, because the connection was still open," Chow said. "We were so afraid that that tank's going to blow up… there would be so many trailers gone."

Fortunately, Surrey firefighters' efforts to keep the tank cool were successful. A garden hose was used until the crew's water truck arrived.

Chow said the trailer burned "really fast," and the flames went "sky high… as high as the cedar trees in here." Naidu lost everything, she said.

Chow described Naidu as "a nice guy… very humble, gentle, very friendly.

"It means a lot to see him lose everything," she said.

Chow said several park residents stepped up to help, offering Naidu clothing and a place to stay. He declined, noting he has the support of family in the area.

Naidu – who has RVed for the past 26 years and has lived at the park on-and-off for years when not travelling for work – said his trailer was insured, but that he has been told the contents are not covered. Items destroyed include clothing, tools, fishing tackle and a laptop, he said.

Despite the turn of events, Naidu said he is okay.

"I thought I lost my sense of humour in the fire, but I'll get it back here in a couple days," he said.

Surrey fire prevention Chief Ron Cross said Tuesday cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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