(Black Press file)

RCMP investigate suspicious fire at cell tower near Nanaimo airport

Mobility and 911 service was temporarily interrupted for an approximately 30–40 km radius

Ladysmith RCMP is investigating after receiving a report of a suspicious fire at a cell tower near the Nanaimo airport.

On Feb. 23 at around 8 a.m., RCMP responded to a call of a fire at a cell tower on McGillivary Road near Spruston Road. The call originated from a staff member of Telus Mobility who was sent to the location to investigate a service disruption at around midnight, according to a news release from the detachment.

“When frontline officers attended, there was enough evidence gathered to suggest that this was a deliberate act to damage the infrastructure,” it said.

The facility is shared by both Telus and Rogers.

Mobility and 911 service was temporarily interrupted for an approximately 30–40 km radius from the tower site, which included the communities of Cassidy and the Nanaimo Airport, Cedar Road and Yellow Point Road near the airport.

There is still some cellular service in the area due to overlapping coverage, but calls made in the aforementioned locations may not be completed due to the tower and equipment damage. Rogers is assessing damage and is aiming to have service restored as soon as possible.

“The RCMP Forensic Identification Service (FIS) attended and processed the scene. The RCMP is also working collaboratively with the Office of the Fire Commissioner”, said Corporal Alex Bérubé, spokesperson for the BC RCMP.

No further information is available at this time.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to contact the Ladysmith RCMP at 250-245-2215.


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