Firemen battle fire for 5 hours

Smoke billows out from a fire at Mighty Peace Chevrolet Buick GMC in Peace River Jan. 28. Firefighters from two departments spent over fire hours battling the flames. Photo courtesy of the Town of Peace River.

Susan Thompson
South Peace News

An investigation into the cause of a fire Jan. 28 at the Mighty Peace Chevrolet Buick GMC Dealership in Peace River is underway after firefighters spent over five hours battling the flames.

Peace River and Weberville fire depart- ments responded to the structure fire spewing heavy smoke on the West Hill along Highway 2 in Peace River at 5:30 p.m. Everyone in the building was safely evacuated before their arrival.

Crews found the fire was in the autobody shop.

“The first in crew made a rapid entry into the structure through the west-side man door and did an excellent job of quickly knocking back the fire,” says fire chief Tim Harris in a Town of Peace River news release.

Crews opened the shop’s bay doors to ventilate the smoke. A masonry firewall helped keep the fire from spreading into the rest of the dealership.

“There was extensive damage to the body shop interior and contents but with the firewall in place, and the fire doors closed, the rest of the building suffered no noticeable damage,” says Harris.

Some clients say they had vehicles in the shop for repairs. According to the fire department one vehicle was destroyed, two more damaged beyond repair, the condition is unknown on a fourth.

Cold temperatures made the job of extinguishing the fire more difficult then normal, with temperatures dropping to -30 C and the windchill making it even colder. Not only did the ice freeze hoses, nozzles, and breathing equipment, but one firefighter got hurt due to a fall.

Once the fire was out, some firefighters stayed at the building overnight to make sure no hotspots flared back up.

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