Sunday, September 14, 2014

Major fire brings out aerials

A major fire this morning in downtown Halifax brought out a wide range of Halifax Regional Municipality Fire and Emergency Services apparatus from both sides of Halifax harbour. At the height of the fire at least four pumpers and numerous support and utility vehicles were on scene but also four aerial devices were at work.
The building, a laminated timber framed former curling rink, was jammed in on two sides by other buildings and only aerials were able to centre in on the seat of the fire.
 Three of four aerials at work on the fire (two at left, on the north side of the building and one on the right on the south side). By the time this was taken the main part of the building had burned and collapsed, and only the office structure in front was still standing.

Most of the pumpers on the job were HRM's newest Spartan Metro Star / Carl Thibaults, like 12-538E and 11-529E.

However Engine 15 responded with Pierce 10-509E. (This unit is based at Station 15, on Pleasant Street in Dartmouth.)

Tactical 8 runs this veteran Freightliner 95-95TS. 

It would not normally be seen downtown, so is likely filling in for another larger unit.

It was joined by this Sterling 04-347S with Drake trailer 04-351T, which is fitted with food and toilet facilities.

E-One Bronto aerial platform 09-489P  was set up closest to the building on its north side.

Down hill, and accessing the east side of the building was LaFrance  LTI 02-305L with its 110 foot ladder. I believe it is also based in Dartmouth.

On the south side of the building, Pierce quint 08-439Q  was wreathed in smoke.
A weary hoseman dismantles a hose line on the west side of the building. LaFrance quint 01-144Q has finished its work. It appears to have damaged its front bumper.  13-554U is one of  several Ford Explorers in the Utility category.

All four aerial devices are rated at 1750 gpm, and were able to bring down unstable portions of the building with their water pressure.

The building was a total loss, along with its contents, which included a corporate headquarters, a framing shop, an adult learning centre (used for police training) and a used furniture warehouse/store. No lives were lost and as far as is known there were no injuries, but many police and firemen inhaled smoke.

For more on the Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency Services, including a complete fleet roster see:

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