Nanaimo RCMP are hailing the actions of a quick-thinking dog walker with averting a potentially “devastating” fire in a popular park.

It happened around 6 a.m. on Monday, June 3, where police say someone deliberately set a fire on a wooden walking bridge in Bowen Park.


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Investigators said a local resident was walking his dog when he saw smoke and flames coming from the end of the bridge.

Police said the man ran home to retrieve a fire extinguisher, and managed to mostly knock the flames down.

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He called 911, and firefighters arrived to finish the job and prevent the fire spreading into the “nearby tinder-dry forest,” police said.

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“This was an extremely selfish deliberate act that could have caused significant damage to not only the bridge but to the surrounding forest,” said Nanaimo RCMP Const. Gary O’Brien.

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The bridge has been closed to the public.

Anyone with information on the fire is asked to contact Nanaimo RCMP or Crime Stoppers if they wish to remain anonymous.

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