Over the past few days Pouce Coupe Village was set ablaze. It was the site of two fires, one prescribed, the other suspicious.
Firefighters for the Peace River Regional District Rural Fire Department responded to a suspicious fire at the base of the trestle bridge located Southwest of Pouce Coupe on Thursday afternoon. According to eyewitness accounts, wood gathered at the base of the bridge - as a result of last year's heavy floods - was set on fire.
Greg Harsch, Fire Chief for the Pouce Coupe Fire Department, confirmed this report calling the blaze "suspicious vandalism."
Timbers did start to ignite at the bottom of the bridge, but it is still operational, according to Harsch. Nearby residents said: "The fire seemed to be well under control," adding that CN workers were on hand to prevent public from getting too close to the bridge.
Given the proximity of the blaze fire crews were hampered by limited access to the base of the bridge, forcing CN Rail to call in a forestry helicopter from Fort St. John to assist putting out the fire.
The second fire was a controlled blaze set by crews Monday evening in the fields adjacent to Pouce Coupe Elementary just off Railway Ave.
Harsch said these fires were intentionally set to control any possible interface fires - brush fires that put communities and people at risk.