Engineers use a crane and a basket to get close to Skyline Manor on 31A Street Tuesday in an attempt to determine the cause of the Feb. 25 fire at the apartment building.

Engineers use a crane and a basket to get close to Skyline Manor on 31A Street Tuesday in an attempt to determine the cause of the Feb. 25 fire at the apartment building.

Fire cause sought

Determining the cause of an apartment building fire is proving increasingly difficult.

Officials had limited access to Skyline Manor complex on 31A Street Tuesday. Most of the investigation was done by a basket at the end of a crane, but there was an opportunity to physically get inside the structure, which was weakened by the fire Feb. 25.

“The structure engineer personally escorted me into the building and certain areas only for short periods of time,” said Dean Wakefield, Vernon fire investigator.

“We couldn’t get into some rooms or halls.”

Wakefield was unable to dig through debris because of structural integrity.

“I will have to look at all of my pictures and information I gathered now. This case is still very much under investigation,” he said.

Wakefield won’t speculate on whether he will determine the cause.

“It appears that it started in a second floor suite at the rear of the building but I can’t say yet which room in the suite,” he said.

Fifty-two people were evacuated from the apartment and the community donated household items to help them recover.

In fact, there were so many donations not everything is needed by the fire victims.

The Salvation Army will sell the remaining items Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the former Cooper’s building on 43rd Avenue.

The money raised by the sale will help those impacted by the fire at the Skyline Manor.

“This will be a cash and carry only sale,” said David MacBain, with the Salvation Army.