A night clerk at the Hotel 760 (formerly Travellers Inn) on Queens Avenue might have averted disaster and injury by putting out a fire this morning and it was only his second day on the job.The Victoria Fire Department and police were on the scene at the hotel this morning investigating the cause of the small fire but by the time theyd arrived the flames were already out.The night auditor (who declined to give his name) said he heard the fire alarm around 4:30 a.m. and walked to end of the lobby to investigate. He saw a door at the end of the first-floor hall engulfed in flames, with little smoke. He quickly grabbed a fire extinguisher and put out the flames, then banged on the door with his boot.I just assumed the whole room was on fire, he said. But it appears the fire was only on the outside of the room.He heard a dog inside the room but the hall filled with too much smoke for him to stand so he ran outside to try to alert the guest inside and called 911. Fire crews arrived on scene and the rooms tenant escaped without injury. Fire inspector Steve Meikle said the fire was set deliberately but could not say the cause. He did say there was an evident odour on the carpet. The cost in damage is about $2,000. Victoria Police spokesman Const. Mike Russell said they are investigating the incident as an arson but do not currently have any suspects.
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