Northmart fire and its impact
Company hoping to open temporary grocery storefront in Happy Valley-Goose Bay
A fire at the Northmart store in Happy Valley-Goose Bay on Saturday, Sept. 15 left the building extensively damaged.
The Happy Valley-Goose Bay Fire Department got a call at about 2:20 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 15 about a fire at the Northmart grocery store on Hamilton River Road.
Fire Chief Brad Butler said when they arrived on scene the fire was burning inside and outside
of the building. The department used a backhoe to tear down part of the front of the building.
Butler said they had about 20 volunteers on scene and did a quick sweep of the building to make sure there was no one inside. He said they had the fire out in about 10 minutes and the fire didn’t extend beyond the end of the cash register area. However, between the fire,
smoke and water damage from the sprinklers the building was extensively damaged.
“No doubt it’ll be a big blow to the community,” he said. “The place is full of groceries, produce, everything, and they’re not getting this fixed before winter, I wouldn’t say. The whole building will have to be redone.”
The North West Company, which owns Northmart, issued a press release on Monday, Sept. 17 that stated the suspected cause of the blaze is an electrical fire.
“We are grateful that all of our employees and customers are safe,” said David Chatyrbok, vice-president of sales and operations at The North West Company in the release. “As fire damage was contained to the front of the building mainly impacting the food section, our current plan is to revamp the
“No doubt it’ll be a big blow to the community” - Fire Chief Brad Butler
adjacent 14,000 square feet of general merchandise area to accommodate a temporary food store until a longer term plan is developed.”
He said it’s important they are up and running as soon as possible for the benefit of both customers and employees.
The release said further information, including an anticipated re-opening timeline for the store, will be provided once confirmed.
Co-op, the only other grocery store in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, has said it plans to increase the amount of food it brings in to accommodate the anticipated demand.
The fire department were on scene just after 2:20 a.m.