Calgary fire destroys business, causes environmental concerns for Bow River

A fire in southeast Calgary destroyed a business and caused some environment concerns for the Bow River. Carolyn Kury de Castillo , Global News

A fire in southeast Calgary broke out at around 3 a.m. at Folk Automotive in the 4200 block of 16A Street SE.

When crews arrived, the fire had already swept through the building and a second alarm was called.

“They protected the exposed buildings on either side and in the back,” Calgary Fire Chief Geoff Thornley said. “The fire was defensive right from the start. It was too engulfed in flames to send any of our crews inside.”

“The crews did a good job protecting buildings on both sides and at the back; there is no damage to any of those buildings.”

However, some of the oil inside the building did manage to spread. Fire crews discovered a used oil container that was damaged as a result of the fire. It started leaking out of the building and into the storm water drain and towards the Bow River, just blocks away.

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“The crews would have been much more aware of such close proximity and that is why they brought a crew in to go on the river and figure out where it was going to leak out to,” Calgary Fire District Chief Jeff Primrose said.

The Calgary Fire Department’s Hazardous Material Response Team set up booms at a water outfall near the Bonnybrook Bridge.

Primrose estimates around 100 gallons leaked from the container.

“That is something that is easily contained and we were able to contain it,” he said. “It’s just a matter now of Alberta Environment dealing with the cleanup.”

The owner of the automotive shop says his building is destroyed. At this point, Dean Folk says his main concern is for his employees who are now out of work.

An investigation into the cause of the fire continues.

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