One person has suffered minor injuries as a result of a harrowing fire that ripped through an encampment in Toronto on Tuesday evening.
At approximately 5:40 p.m., Toronto police and fire crews responded to multiple reports of a blaze near the Fort York National Historic Site. Several terrifying videos of the fire were uploaded to social media, which showed a thick cloud of smoke hovering over the encampment.
— blogTO (@blogTO) November 29, 2023
According to police, the fire originated in the ravine area, where a woman had turned on a wood stove to keep herself warm.
“It got to a dumpster set. And what we had beside there appears to be some sort of flammable liquids, it exploded,” Platoon Chief David Quinn told CP24.
Big fire in Fort York? pic.twitter.com/aH4VxNCY0P
— Jeffrey Hall (@hallofjeff) November 28, 2023
Firefighters managed to quickly extinguish the fiery blaze, and paramedics assessed one person at the scene for minor burn injuries. Luckily, no other injuries were reported.
Unfortunately, this is just the latest encampment fire to make headlines this past week. On Saturday, a substantial fire broke out in Kensington Market at an encampment in Bellevue Square Park.
— blogTO (@blogTO) November 27, 2023
At approximately 8:30 a.m., emergency crews arrived at the scene and worked quickly to extinguish the fire.
The fire resulted in lots of mixed reactions online, with some who felt that the blaze was interestingly timed considering that the day before, the City was planning to clear another encampment just a short distance away at St. Stephen-In-The-Fields Church.
While the City has maintained that clearing encampments is a “tool of last resort,” it also cites an obligation to address the accumulation of “combustible and hoarded materials on site,” which have the potential to pose a risk to individuals encamped there and those in the surrounding area.