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Point Douglas warehouse fire out, but hot spots remain: City

Click to play video: 'Point Douglas warehouse fire sends smoke over downtown, parts of Winnipeg' Point Douglas warehouse fire sends smoke over downtown, parts of Winnipeg
A large warehouse fire in Point Douglas spread smoke throughout large parts of north, east and downtown Winnipeg and evacuated nearby homes Tuesday – Sep 28, 2021

A large warehouse fire in Point Douglas spread smoke throughout large parts of north, east and downtown Winnipeg and evacuated nearby homes Tuesday.

Firefighters began attending to the blaze at a business at 2 Point Douglas Ave. around 11:20 Tuesday morning. Listings for that address say the business is a chemical company called Gateway Industrial.

Read more: WFPS responds to house fire caused by unattended cooking

A release from the city later in the day said the warehouse was vacant at the time of the fire. Wednesday morning, the fire was mostly out but the city said crews would stay on scene to smother hot spots.

Winnipeg firefighters remain on scene on Higgins Avenue for a warehouse blaze Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2021. Rudi Pawlychyn/Global News

Due to the size of the blaze, the city said a second alarm was called, bringing roughly 100 firefighters and 33 apparatus to the scene. Officials said firefighters took a defensive attack because the building’s structural integrity was compromised.

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Click to play video: 'Fire burns in Point Douglas neighbourhood' Fire burns in Point Douglas neighbourhood
Fire burns in Point Douglas neighbourhood – Sep 28, 2021

One firefighter was treated by paramedics at the scene and taken to hospital in stable condition. No other injuries have been reported.

The city says 10 homes near the fire were temporarily evacuated as a precaution and it’s not known when they will be able to return.  The city’s emergency social services team was called to assist displaced residents in finding temporary accomodations.

Crews are working to protect nearby buildings from embers being carried by the wind.

A stationary railcar nearby carrying rail ties was ignited and crews were working Tuesday night to put that fire out.

Read more: Winnipeg fire crews extinguish two early morning blazes Sunday

People with breathing conditions are advised to stay indoors and keep doors and windows closed because of the ongoing smoke.

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Higgins Avenue at Point Douglas Avenue was closed, and the road closures were later expanded to Annabella Street and Sutherland Avenue. The street re-opened overnight.

 

Firefighters battle a Point Douglas blaze Tuesday. Michael Draven / Global News

“They are putting in apparatuses and resources in place… because we can get (the fire) from up top, and hopefully we can get it like that and put it out… but there’s the potential that it could take longer than normal,” Assistant Chief of Fire Rescue Operations Jamie Vanderhorst said while crews worked Tuesday afternoon.

“The fire appears to be in the middle of the building so the roof has collapsed in on either side to make it unsafe for crews to make entry into the building, so what the crews are now doing is they’re working from the outside trying to put it out.”

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Read more: Neighbours use ladder to rescue person from burning Winnipeg home, city says

A release from the city sent shortly before 5:20 p.m. said crews were expected to remain at the scene “for an extended period of time” bringing the fire under control and putting out hotspots.

Local road closures remained in effect at that time and Winnipeggers were advised to avoid the area. The cause of the fire remains under investigation and an estimate on damages was not immediately available.

–With files from Shane Gibson

Michael Draven / Global News. Michael Draven / Global News
Michael Draven / Global News. Michael Draven / Global News
Michael Draven / Global News. Michael Draven / Global News
A view of the smoke from St. Boniface. Submitted
Smoke from a Point Douglas fire. Submitted
Submitted / Jay. Submitted / Jay
Submitted / Kirk. Submitted / Kirk
Click to play video: 'Firefighters find body after Young Street fire' Firefighters find body after Young Street fire
Firefighters find body after Young Street fire – Sep 21, 2021

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