Fire Marshal takes samples from Churchill Street house fire

An Ontario Fire Marshal investigations truck is parked outside a fire scene at a Churchill Street home in Cornwall, Ont. on Sunday, Aug. 18, 2019. The OFM has sent fire samples to the Toronto Center of Forensic Sciences but early indications are that there's nothing criminal associated with the fire. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

CORNWALL – Samples from a Churchill Street house fire have been sent to Toronto’s Center of Forensic Sciences but, at this point, investigators don’t suspect anything suspicious.

The fire at 1106 Churchill Street around 4 a.m. Saturday gutted the two storey building, hurt a baby girl and displaced the family of five. The infant was last reported to be at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO).

In an interview with Cornwall Newswatch Tuesday, Roger Gibson, an investigator with the Ontario Fire Marshal, said they are in the middle of their work and a report will issued at the end.

“I’m still in the middle of my investigation so I don’t really have a whole lot of information as to cause,” Gibson said.

But Gibson’s early determination is that there is no foul play involved but that will be confirmed in the results from samples sent for examination. Results of those samples may take “weeks,” he said.

“Until I know for sure there is or isn’t something there, I can’t make a determination. I don’t have any reason to think there is, but that’s part of the process, that we take samples to make sure something wasn’t put there. I definitely don’t have any suspicions at this point,” Gibson told CNW.

Gibson’s early determination falls in line with Cornwall Fire Services Chief Pierre Voisine, who told this media outlet Sunday that he didn’t suspect foul play.

The chief credits working smoke alarms for waking the family up so they were able to get out of the house.

Voisine said on Sunday the OFM was called in due to the injury to the child.

The chief was not immediately available for comment this afternoon (Wednesday).

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