Valiant fire-fighting effort unable to save building

  • Jun. 21, 2004 5:00 a.m.

By Mariah McCooey-The Trading Post, Sandspit’s everything store, burnt to the ground last week, on the evening of Thursday June 17.
“It was bad,” said an exhausted Reg Brady, fire chief, “a total loss. We just couldn’t slow it down.” Firefighters worked until midnight to contain the fire, but despite a valiant effort, were unable to prevent the building – and all the merchandise inside – from going up in smoke.
“It certainly is a loss to the community,” said Mr. Brady. “I think it’s just sinking in for people today. (Friday) (The Trading Post) was a focal point – they sold everything.”
Although the cause of the blaze has not been determined, Mr. Brady speculated that the age of the building could have been a factor, combined with the abundance of flammable items like paint.
A witness phoned the fire department at about 7 pm to report the blaze. Over the next 5 hours, firefighters pumped “about 20 truck loads” of water onto the building. Since Sandspit has no fire hydrants, they had to drive back and forth to the airport to refill the pumper truck. Mr. Brady said that they also had a saltwater pump from the ocean going but that it didn’t make much of a difference.
Another eyewitness Gerry Bellefleur said that it was “quite a bonfire,” and that the store was “pretty much levelled.” Nobody got hurt though, he said, which is what’s really important. “Stuff can be replaced,” he said.
The blaze could be seen from across the water in Skidegate, and apparently residents there were also calling the fire department from there. People even as far north as Wiggins Road saw the fire.
Store owner Carol Bowler, was doing “remarkably good” during the fire, said Mr. Brady, considering the circumstances. Her husband was away at the time, and they were unable to contact him with the news.

Just Posted

Moms of those killed by illicit opioids take to B.C. Legislature in call for action

Moms Stop the Harm, a nationwide network of families who have lost loved ones to overdoses rally

Gwaii Haanas Report: Talking About Everything plan

By Victoria Leslie A dinner of crab legs and clam fritters, halibut… Continue reading

115 new wildfires burning across B.C. due to 19,000 lightning strikes

More fires expected to start today, says BC Wildfire Service officials

CHN seeks injunction against logging at Collison Point

Weeks after ordering an end to a blockade there, the B.C. Supreme… Continue reading

Marijuana to be legal in Canada Oct. 17: Trudeau

Prime Minister made the announcement during question period in the House of Commons

Pigs crash yoga class in B.C.

First it was goats, now it’s pigs — you can get downward dog with the whole farm in Aldergrove

Judge dismisses DNA request in Cranbrook triple murder case

Dean Christopher Roberts must appeal directly to the federal Minister of Justice, reads ruling.

Yes, we could use a soft drink tax

NDP rejects useful tax advice because it’s not popular

Canada sweeps China in Pacific Rim Basketball Classic

National men’s team beats China twice over weekend in Vancouver and Victoria

Rainbow crosswalk in B.C. defaced 10 days after installation

Surrey’s first rainbow crosswalk has been defaced sometime over the weekend

Closing arguments expected in trial for twice convicted Canadian killer

Crown, defence expected to give closing arguments in Millard murder trial

Canadians undertake the world’s most dangerous peacekeeping mission

A dozen Canadian peacekeepers arrive in Mali as yearlong mission begins

U.S. justices won’t hear case of anti-gay marriage florist

The case is regarding whether business owners can refuse on religious grounds to comply with anti-discrimination laws

Most Read