Residents of The Alana don’t know exactly when they will be allowed to move back into suites heavily damaged by smoke and water during an apartment fire Tuesday night.

“It will be a couple of days,” said North Vancouver Fire Chief Barrie Penman, outside the 26-suite apartment yesterday.

From the rear alley, the damage appeared isolated to three charred suites on the west side of the building.
“There’s a lot of smoke damage,” Penman said. “It doesn’t smell very good in there. There’s actually no reason to push people back into their suites.

“If there’s medication or car keys we can send crews in to help out. But as far as accessing the building and living in it, it’ll be some time now.”

Residents Jordan Gillmore and his girlfriend Kristi Hume said they spent the night with a family member, while Bryan Matthews and his son Dustan bedded down at his boss’ house.

RCMP Const. Michael McLaughlin said it will be days before people will be allowed back home.

Ideally, he said, people will stay with friends and family. Victim services will help those who haven’t a place to stay.

Matthews said he’s unsure where he’ll stay.

“It’s the first time I’ve had to do this,” he said. “We’ve got the camper.”

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