The Saskatoon Fire Department says a blaze that destroyed a house and a garage in the Pacific Heights area early Saturday morning was the result of an unattended open-air firepit.
A fire investigator has confirmed the fire originated in an illegal container without a screen and quickly spread to a nearby garage before extending to the rear roof of the house.
Fire crews received several 911 calls at about 1:10 a.m. Saturday about the fire, and when they arrived at the home in the 300 block of Johnson Crescent, the detached garage was fully involved in fire, with flames extending towards the rear of the house.
Firefighters were able to bring the blaze under control at around 3 a.m.
Two occupants who had been unaccounted for, a man and a woman, were confirmed not to have been home at the time of the fire. Two dogs died in the blaze and were found and removed by firefighters.
The house and garage were a total loss at an approximate value of $400,000.
The Community Relations section of the Saskatoon Fire Department will be conducting an After the Fire follow-up in the immediate area surrounding the fire scene. Informational packages will be handed out to more than 100 residences in the Pacific Heights neighbourhood.
The fire department is reminding the public to burn responsibly, respectfully and safely when choosing to have an open-air fire.