Recent rains prevented a potential forest fire from starting in Porter Creek on Thursday.
A burned SUV was discovered near Hidden Lake behind Porter Creek Secondary School early Thursday morning.
Police officers responded after hearing complaints that shots had been heard and smoke was coming from the wooded area, Const. Christine Grant said Thursday afternoon.
Fire crews were on the scene when the police arrived.
The vehicle was already destroyed when the fire department arrived, acting deputy fire chief Kevin Lyslo said Thursday afternoon. The exact cause of the fire hasn’t been determined, but it is definitely “suspicious,” he said.
“It’s very suspicious when you find a vehicle down in the woods like that in the wee hours of the morning and it’s on fire,” he said.
And if not for the rain during the last week, things could have been much more serious, said Lyslo.
Recent rainfall is the only thing that has kept the city’s fire rating from being listed as high to extreme, he said. If the ground hadn’t already been wet because of the rain, a forest fire could have started. And that could have put Porter Creek homes in danger.
“It could have been a very potentially bad situation,” said Lyslo. But the school was never in immediate danger, he said.
There was no licence plate on the vehicle, said Grant. The area close by was also torn up, she said.
No one was injured and only the vehicle and property were damaged, she said. Police are still investigating the incident. Anyone with information is urged to call the Whitehorse RCMP at (867) 667-5551.