Firefighters from Midway Fire and Rescue and the BC Wildfire Service join Vaagen staff in putting out a small hog fuel fire at the mill Sunday evening, July. 25. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Firefighters from Midway Fire and Rescue and the BC Wildfire Service join Vaagen staff in putting out a small hog fuel fire at the mill Sunday evening, July. 25. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Firefighters, staff put out repeat fire at Midway sawmill

Sunday’s fire marks the second time this month that hog fuel has self-ignited at Vaagen Fibre

Firefighters and mill staff put out a hog fuel fire at Midway’s Vaagen Fibre for the second time this month.

Mike Daloise, chief at Midway Fire and Rescue (MFR), said the fire likely started at around 4:50 p.m., Sunday, July 25, when he said a fire started within a pile of wood waste known as “hog fuel.” Rising winds threatened to send sparks onto buildings around the mill site, but none caught fire thanks to patrols by MFR and a responding BC Wildfire Service (BCWS) crew.

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A BC Wildfire Service Helicopter approaches the fire, carrying a bucket of water scooped from the nearby Kettle River. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

A BC Wildfire Service Helicopter approaches the fire, carrying a bucket of water scooped from the nearby Kettle River. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Firefighters and Vaagen staff managed to contain the fire with the help of a BCWS helicopter, which dropped several buckets of water scooped from the nearby Kettle River. The fire was mostly extinguished by around 8:20 p.m., Daloise said.

A torrent of water gushes from a bucket carried by a BC Wildfire Service helicopter. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

A torrent of water gushes from a bucket carried by a BC Wildfire Service helicopter. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

The fire department last put out a hog fuel fire at the mill on Wednesday, July 14. Hog fuel piles can burn from the inside out due to the heat generated by microbes feeding on the wood, Daloise explained.

No one was hurt in Sunday’s fire, he said.

Vaagen manager Dan Macmaster was unavailable for comment when The Times went to press Monday, July 26.


 

@ltritsch1
laurie.tritschler@grandforksgazette.ca

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laurie.tritschler@boundarycreektimes.com

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