Dumpster fire causes $10,000 in damage to business

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A fire which caused $10,000 damage to a dumpster and the back of a building Nov. 24 has been deemed suspicious by the Airdrie Fire Department (AFD).

“It was deemed suspicious and it will remain suspicious,” Deputy Fire Chief Garth Rabel said.

“The cause will remain undetermined simply because it’s so difficult to determine exactly what the cause was. The investigation will be closed on it. There’s not much else we can do on it unless someone decides to phone in information to the authorities to let us know something different.”

Rabel said the AFD was called to the fire at approximately 8:04 p.m. behind the Dollarama store on Main Street South.

“There was a plume that could be seen in the sky,” he said.

“It’s a Cleanpak recycle bin-dumpster – the big wheeled kind – so it’s much bigger than a garbage can. It was full of combustible material.”

According to Rabel, staff and customers from the Dollarama as well as neighbouring businesses were evacuated as a precaution.

“We just wanted to make sure no smoke had gotten into the building and caused any carbon monoxide concerns,” he said.

“Dollarama stayed closed for the rest of the night. It was coming to the end of the work day anyway.”

Thirteen firefighters responded to the scene along with four pieces of firefighting equipment and were able to quickly contain the fire.

“If this would have happened later or earlier in the morning we could have had a much different result,” Rabel said. “This was an extremely hot fire.”

“It definitely damaged the back of the one bay…and that’s a pretty indestructible material – it scorched that pretty good.”

Rabel said the fire is a good reminder to businesses and residents to keep the areas where garbage and recycling are collected tidy so they don’t turn into targets for arsonists or people up to mischief.

He said there were no injuries reported.

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