January 16, 2019 5:12 pm

Residents confuse Bowmanville greenhouse’s glow for raging blaze

Gord Weir, Clarington's fire chief, says his team has received more than a dozen recent calls about a fire at Rekker's Garden Centre in Bowmanville, Ont., but this is merely a bright greenhouse light.


Clarington’s fire chief says his department has been inundated with recent calls for a fire at an area greenhouse but the “blaze” onlookers report is, in fact, a startling glow from lights and steam inside the greenhouse.

Gord Weir says more than a dozen people within the last few weeks have called in at night to say there is a fire at Rekker’s Garden Centre in Bowmanville, Ont., but the bright light people see is no cause for alarm.

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Rekker Gardens Inc. owner Gerard Prins says people passing by the greenhouse at Highway 2 and Maple Grove Road are seeing high-intensity “grow lights” that help his plants flourish during shorter, winter days. This, combined with the steam from the boiler room, looks like a fire.

“It’s a bit of a concern because of all of the false alarms,” he said.

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Chief Weir is urging people in the area to think twice before calling in to report a fire at the garden centre.

“We’re using a lot of resources on something that isn’t a fire,” he said. “We send out our crews … and of all of the calls [to the greenhouse], there has been no fire.”


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