www.firefightingincanada.com

Headlines News
Worker called in during Winnipeg fuel plant blaze

Oct. 2, 2012, Winnipeg – An employee at a Winnipeg fuel plant that caught fire says the blaze could have been a lot worse.

October 2, 2012
By The Canadian Press

Oct. 2, 2012, Winnipeg – An employee at a Winnipeg fuel plant that caught fire says the blaze could have been a lot worse.

Evan Basarowich says no one was in the Speedway International plant Monday afternoon when the fire alarm sounded, because workers were waiting for a shipment of powder used to purify biodiesel.

Basarowich was one of the workers called in when the alarm sounded and was standing nearby when a huge ball of fire shot into the sky.

He says the big explosion was in a methanol tank, and fire crews and CN Rail workers acted quickly to get some nearby tanker cars out of the way.

There's no word yet on what caused the fire.

Basarowich says he and the company's other seven employees may be out of work if the owner chooses not to rebuild.

The fire burned for several hours and forced the evacuation of nearby homes and businesses, but did not result in any injuries. City officials gave the all-clear signal around 12:30 a.m. Tuesday and hundreds of people went home.

Fire platoon chief Ted Kuryluk said that all that remains is the shell of the building and some trucks. He estimated damage at $15 million.

"It's basically totally devastated: a shell of a building, (the) shell of a number of trucks and equipment and some rail cars. The rail cars are still intact," said Kuryluk.

"We're not sure about the product inside just yet."

The chief said the fire kept getting bigger and bigger, forcing fire officials to move the command post back twice.