Dock fire garners praise for QC fire department

  • Nov. 21, 2003 7:00 a.m.

The gillnetter Lucky Ann lived up to her name Friday (Nov. 21). Thanks to a quick response by the Queen Charlotte volunteer fire fighters, the fish boat emerged from a mid-morning fire with only some interior damage. Her hull, engine and cabin are all intact, according to Queen Charlotte harbour manager Bob Olsen.
Mr. Olsen said he phoned the fire department at 11:05 Friday morning, after a couple of young people walking on the dock told him they could see smoke billowing from the Lucky Ann.
The fire fighters were on the scene within minutes, and by 11:20 am, the fire was out, Mr. Olsen said.
“It was pretty crackerjack,” he said. “They’ve been practising down at the docks and it sure paid off.”
Mr. Olsen said he suspects the cause of the fire was electrical, as he found a frayed and burnt cord at the scene. No one was aboard the Lucky Ann at the time.
Queen Charlotte fire chief Larry Duke said 11 fire fighters responded to the call and were at the dock within five minutes. Although they got the fire under control quickly, they spent the next 40 minutes making absolutely sure it was out.
Mr. Duke credits the new water pipes and fire hydrants at the dock for the successful response, as well as a recent training session. It was the first time the new pipes and fire hydrants had been used.
Previously, the closest fire hydrant to the docks was at Rainbows Gallery, Mr. Duke said. Using it would have meant putting the hose across Third Avenue and blocking traffic. Instead, fire fighters used the new hydrant near the dock, 300 feet closer.
It also helped that the call came during the middle of the day rather than at night, and that it wasn’t raining, the fire chief added.
“It was the perfect call,” Mr. Duke said. “It went great, and we’re very happy with the improvements at the wharf.”