The death of a man in a garage fire in Moncton early Wednesday is being investigated by the New Brunswick coroner’s office.
Platoon chief Robert Brine says firefighters responded to a garage fire at approximately 6 a.m. Wednesday on Rogers Road, about 15 kilometres west of the city centre near Berry Mills.
He says firefighters were notified en route that a person might be inside the residence, and when they arrived they had to break open a door to access the fully engulfed building.
“They found the victim right at the door,” said Don McCabe, acting fire chief with the Moncton Fire Department.
Brine says firefighters pulled the man out of the building, but he was already dead.
While the fire itself was put out in about 20 minutes, Moncton Fire is reminding people to keep their driveways and areas around their homes after snow caused some difficulty fighting the blaze.
A tanker that was brought in to fight the blaze due to a fire hydrant being unavailable, couldn’t be used after it got stuck trying to reach the fire.
“One of the wheels slipped off the convert cause he couldn’t see the contour of the snow,” Brine said. “Everything was white so he was just trying to back up.”
However, Brine said the tanker getting stuck didn’t impact battling the blaze, as another tanker was on scene to provide water.
McCabe said in an interview there are ways people can help first responders after snow storms like the one that hit much of the province Monday.
He said because streets are often narrowed due to large snow banks and people’s windows can be blocked, residents should try and keep paths to and from all entrances passable. He also said clearing snow away from fire hydrants can help even further.
“Every minute counts to us if we have a delay catching the water supply, if we have a delay getting to your house. [But] if it’s easier to get there, it makes it easier for us,” McCabe said.
Brine says it’s yet to be determined whether the man’s death was related to the fire – that will be determined by the coroner and a fire department investigation.
– With files from The Canadian Press