CALL IT IN

Four prop­er­ties dam­aged in lat­est in­ci­dent in Florence

Cape Breton Post - - Front Page - BY JULIE COLLINS jcollins@cb­post.com

If you see a grass­fire, call the lo­cal fire de­part­ment, says chief.

Chief Dave Ju­lian is urg­ing peo­ple to call when­ever they see a grass fire.

“Of­ten peo­ple think some­one else will prob­a­bly call it in but this didn’t hap­pen on Mon­day,” said the chief of the Florence Vol­un­teer Fire De­part­ment.

“When we rolled up, the scene looked like a war zone. The fire ex­ten­sively dam­aged a two-ve­hi­cle garage on Pitt Street. It quickly de­vel­oped into a ma­jor brush fire and even­tu­ally spread across four prop­er­ties catch­ing peo­ple’s fences on fire and threat­ened a nearby barn.”

This time of year the Florence fire de­part­ment is kept busy of­ten from noon through to the early hours of the morn­ing, fight­ing grass fires.

“It’s like this for ev­ery vol­un­teer fire de­part­ment,” said Ju­lian. “It’s the sec­ond garage fire we had in a month caused by a ‘harm­less’ grass fire. The first near Pond Bridge un­for­tu­nately was a to­tal loss.”

When the fire­fight­ers ar­rived on scene at around 3:45 p.m., Mon­day there was a heavy fire load in the rear and in­side the garage.

A mo­tor­cy­cle and two clas­sic cars were re­moved from the garage with­out dam­age.

“It’s very frus­trat­ing know­ing that this struc­ture fire started as a grass fire some­one set. Peo­ple need to be re­port­ing these while they are still just grass fires to help pre­vent fur­ther dam­age,” Ju­lian said. “Don’t worry that it may have al­ready been called in, that doesn’t mat­ter. What

mat­ters is peo­ple take no­tice and call it in, it’s just a few sec­onds of their time.”

Re­fer­ring to the Easter long week­end, Ju­lian said al­most ev­ery vol­un­teer fire­fighter in the re­gional mu­nic­i­pal­ity was out all hours of the night and day fight­ing grass fires.

“Easter Sun­day we had seven grass fires all at the same time and we have five trucks. It is

im­pos­si­ble to keep up.”

Ju­lian is also urg­ing res­i­dents to pile their heavy garbage away from trees, util­ity poles or struc­tures.

“Dur­ing that struc­ture fire on Mon­day I was driv­ing along the road look­ing for the fire hy­drant and be­cause it was sur­rounded by heavy garbage I didn’t see it,” he said.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

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SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

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