Approximately at 10 a.m. on Monday, October 22nd the fire started at Pounder Emulsions at 28 hundred Day Street. The Transcona Asphalt plant caught on fire, the rescue and firefighter teams were called and dispatched to control the fire and help people if needed.
Crews were checking for any hotspots Monday evening on Day Street between Gunn and Springfield roads. The fire forced the evacuation of some nearby businesses as well as one school in the area. The evacuation order was lifted Monday evening. Thankfully, there were no injuries and the cause of the blaze remains under investigation.
City of Winnipeg authorities had posted a public message on one of their social media accounts: “Emergency crews evacuated businesses within an 800-meter area of the fire location out of an abundance of caution. Certain schools in the area also evacuated - contact school division for more info.”
Also, people living in a two-kilometer range, who have breathing problems or some other health issues, involving breath ways are recommended to stay indoors to avoid being exposed to a toxic smoke from the fire.
Winnipeg Police had also posted a tweet about road closures:
“ROAD CLOSURES: The Area bound by Day Street, Redonda, North Perimeter and Paulley/Larche is closed to traffic due to a working fire. Please avoid the area.”
RCMP Manitoba also tweeted a warning:
“Emergency crews are at an asphalt plant fire in the industrial area of the RM of Springfield. Gunn Rd entrance is closed at the Perimeter Hwy. Please avoid the area.”
The River East-Transcona School Division evacuated Harold Hatcher School and placed three other schools on hold-and-secure lockdowns to prevent smoke from entering. The whole situation got a lot of people scared and worried about kids and school employee’s lives and health. So the decision about the evacuation was made instantly and everyone was notified in a matter of minutes.
The city said the situation was well in hand as of 4:30 p.m. but crews were continuing to monitor. A number of programs scheduled for the evening were canceled to avoid a big number of people gathering in one location, which could be possibly exposed to toxic smoke or in the fire danger zone.
As of now, there was no official statement from Winnipeg Police or Winnipeg city authority’s spokesperson, the investigation is still ongoing, so no information about the reasons of fire and what led to such outcome. No injuries reported so far, as per firefighter crews, nobody got hurt from their team, but there is no information about civilian victims or plant employees, that might have got in the fire or got injuries caused by the fire.
The Fire Department report will be presented later when the investigation is closed. If you have any useful information about the reason of the fire, about anybody involved or got injured during the incident, please contact the local police department or leave a tip online, just visit Crime Stoppers website.