Fire crews extinguished a blaze that broke out at a building just off the Malahat Highway Wednesday morning, displacing two families who lived there.

Firefighters were called to the structure fire at a cabin duplex behind the Malahat Gas Station at around 11:45 a.m.

They arrived to find large flames and heavy smoke shooting from one side of the duplex, with the fire starting to wrap around to the other side.

Malahat Fire called in mutual aid from Mill Bay and Shawnigan Lake volunteer fire departments, and said they had water on the blaze within 10 minutes.

Firefighters then made quick work of the blaze, but not before it did severe damage to the building.

Malahat Fire's Gerry Lacquement said two families have been displaced as a result of the blaze, which destroyed one side of the building. The other unit suffered severe smoke and water damage, he said.

No one was home at the time flames broke out.

Witness Darrell Taylor captured video of the incident and said the owners of the home were okay, but upset over the damage.

Lacquement said it comes as volunteer fire departments across the province, including Malahat Fire, grapple with a lack of staff.

"We're always looking for day time people," he said.