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Over 100 displaced after fire in Downtown Vancouver hostel

A fire that started in a pickup truck near Granville and Nelson Streets on Saturday morning spread to a nearby hostel and led to significant damage there. (Jon Hernandez/CBC - image credit)
A fire that started in a pickup truck near Granville and Nelson Streets on Saturday morning spread to a nearby hostel and led to significant damage there. (Jon Hernandez/CBC - image credit)

A hostel in Vancouver's Granville Entertainment District was significantly damaged by a fire overnight on Saturday, according to officials.

Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services say they first received a call around 2 a.m. to the 1020 block of Granville Street, where a pickup truck had caught fire behind the Backpackers Hostel.

The fire then spread to the hostel and led to the evacuation of the building, as well as the Hotel Belmont next door.

Assistant Fire Chief Pierre Morin told CBC News that over 100 people were displaced from the hostel, but the residents of the Belmont were eventually given the all-clear.

Dozens of people could be seen outside the hostel on Saturday morning. It is located in the Granville Entertainment District.
Dozens of people could be seen outside the hostel on Saturday morning. It is located in the Granville Entertainment District.

Dozens of people could be seen outside the hostel on Saturday morning. It is located in the Granville Entertainment District. (Courtney Dickson/CBC)

"The hostel will be closed for some time," he said Saturday morning. "The 1000 block [of Granville Street] is closed. Will be all day."

Morin said that one firefighter was injured from a falling ceiling while responding to the blaze. He has subsequently been treated and released by emergency crews.

No civilians were injured in the blaze, and the fire's cause hasn't yet been determined, according to Morin. He said that since the ceiling collapsed, it "is a complete writeoff."

Over 70 firefighters responded to the fire on Saturday morning. A nearby single-room occupancy building was also evacuated due to the fire.