What a DISASTER!
Sometimes it’s a human mistake, sometimes it’s terrible weather. Often it’s both. Whatever the cause of a disaster, there have been plenty throughout Canada’s past. Here are some of the worst.
In October, 1825, after a hot, dry summer, one of the worst wildfires in the history of North America swept through New Brunswick’s Miramichi region, destroying towns and about one-fifth of the province’s forests. Hundreds died, but a year later, the survivors had rebuilt. On June 13, 1886, railway workers lit a small fire to clear land in Vancouver. A sudden gust of wind sent it out of control, burning up nearly 1,000 wooden buildings in less than 45 minutes. The terrible fire of July 8, 1892 in St. John’s, NL, left the downtown in smoking ruins. Dry weather and mistakes by the fire department — they forgot to refill a huge water tank after a practice drill — meant that what could have been a small blaze spread fast and far. About 11,000 people were left with no homes and only the clothes they were wearing, but only three people died. Canada — which was then a different country — immediately sent a ship from Halifax with tents, food and other supplies.
Vancouver after the deadly 1886 fire