File photo.

File photo.

Grand Forks Fire/Rescue puts out fire at city landfill

The department says favourable winds and a 911 caller went a long way to preventing a serious wildfire

Volunteer fire fighters and a machine operator contained a fire at Grand Forks’ landfill Tuesday night, Aug. 3, preventing a potentially disastrous inferno.

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Dep. Chief Rich Piché said Grand Forks Fire/Rescue (GFFR) was called to a wood chip fire at the Grand Forks Regional Landfill (8798 Granby Rd) at around 11 p.m. The fire had started earlier in the day, when a stockpile of wood chips self-ignited. That fire was largely contained by landfill workers, who soaked the pile with water and then covered most of it with clay, according to site supervisor Rob McGregor.

Rob McGregor, site supervisor at the Grand Forks Regional Landfill, said Tuesday night’s fire could’ve been much worse. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Rob McGregor, site supervisor at the Grand Forks Regional Landfill, said Tuesday night’s fire could’ve been much worse. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Piché said overnight winds likely reignited the fire at the base of the pile, giving off a brilliant glow spotted from Granby Road. A hulking pile of green waste next to the wood chips did not catch fire.

“If someone hadn’t called that in, there was massive potential for a serious wildfire,” he told The Gazette Wednesday morning, adding that, “If the wind had been going against us, we’d still be there right now.”

A wide shot shows a green waste pile lying metres from the pile of wood chips which caught fire Tuesday night, Aug. 3. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

A wide shot shows a green waste pile lying metres from the pile of wood chips which caught fire Tuesday night, Aug. 3. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Eight volunteer fire fighters joined Piché and one of the landfill’s machine operators in tackling the fire. The department left the scene around two hours later, having put 2,800 gallons of water onto the pile.

Site supervisor Rob McGregor said landfill crews took over at around 6:30 Wednesday morning.

Workers use an excavator and a firehose to mop up Tuesday night’s fire at the Grand Forks Regional Landfill. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

Workers use an excavator and a firehose to mop up Tuesday night’s fire at the Grand Forks Regional Landfill. Photo: Laurie Tritschler

No buildings caught fire and there is no serious risk of a larger area wildfire.


 

@ltritsch1
laurie.tritschler@grandforksgazette.ca

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laurie.tritschler@boundarycreektimes.com

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