Kelsey Enns

Summerland powerline technician Kelsey Enns is being hailed as a hero after spotting a house fire last week in Garnet Valley.

A powerline technician in Summerland is being credited with saving a home – and possibly someone’s life – while on the job last week.

Employees of the district’s electrical utility were busy June 24 restoring power after a thunderstorm swept through early that morning.

Kelsey Enns, who was dispatched to deal with a power outage in Garnet Valley that resulted from a lightning strike, arrived at a home there just as the owners were leaving. Moments later, he noticed the home’s gas line had caught fire and ignited the side of the building.

Enns banged on a door and woke up someone who was sleeping inside the home, then turned off the gas and called the Summerland Fire Department, which limited the spread of flames to an exterior wall.

“These guys are used to working under pressure, but the fire definitely brought that up a level,” Jeremy Storvold, general manager of the power utility, said in a press release.

“Kelsey’s quick response made us all very proud and he was very enthusiastic about that opportunity to save the day.”

The home in question belongs to Peter Thiessen, a long-time B.C. RCMP spokesman who retired in 2014 and recently relocated to the Garnet Valley.

“Having worked with the RCMP for 30 years and with a son in the fire service, the immediate response from the time I called (to report the lightning strike) to when Kelsey called me back and arrived at my home was outstanding and exceptional,” Thiessen said in the release.

“His assessment of the situation was immediate. If it wasn’t for him and the professionalism of all the emergency responders, this could have ended in disaster for our family. Being new to the community, it’s reassuring to see.”