City of Edmonton to conduct large-scale fire risk assessment at waste facilities

Crews with Edmonton Fire Rescue Services battle a fire at a city waste facility Tuesday evening. Aug. 30, 2016.
Crews with Edmonton Fire Rescue Services battle a fire at a city waste facility Tuesday evening. Aug. 30, 2016. Nathan Gross/ Global News

The City of Edmonton is looking to lower the risk of fire at various waste services sites.

A recent Request for Proposals (RFP) for a fire risk assessment outlines that there were 10 fires in various operational facilities in 2016. City spokesperson Lyndsey Barton would not comment on the severity or location of the blazes.

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No details were provided for how many fires broke out at waste facilities in 2017, with Barton saying the city did not want to release that information so as not to impact the RFP process.

Barton said this is the first time waste services has conducted a fire risk assessment on this scale.

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The RFP states the city is looking for a vendor to assess eight collection sites, such as Eco Stations and ReUse Centres, and 14 sustainable waste sites at the Edmonton Waste Management Centre. Firefighters battled a blaze at the Waste Management Centre on Aug. 30, 2016, after a pile of wood caught fire. Crews were also called to the facility on May 24, 2014, after an electronics bin caught fire.

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“Waste Services is focused on improving overall site safety, identifying risks and putting positive controls in place to build effectiveness and efficiencies in our operations,” Barton said.

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The project will involve identifying all potential risks and hazards at the sites and implementing changes to reduce the likelihood of fire impacting operations or staff. The assessment will include identifying sources of ignition, fuel and oxygen as well as identifying people who may be at risk, such as children, those with disabilities and those unable to speak English.

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A vendor is expected to be chosen mid-year with the project scheduled for completion in the fall.