Norwood man arrested in connection to Peterborough fires
Fire hits three businesses along Lansdowne Street West; OPP probing $1 million blaze in Norwood
City police made an arrest early Tuesday morning after a series of fires were reported along Lansdowne Street West.
These fires included a blaze at a lumber storage building at Merrett Home Hardware Building Centre that caused an estimated $400,000 in damage.
Firefighters headed to the Lansdowne Street West property just before midnight Monday, finding smoke and flames coming from an upper level of a building. Crews put the fire out before it could spread.
That fire also brought police to the area. Officers found a second fire behind a dumpster at Castrol Express Oil Change and Tire Centre and a third fire behind Paulmac’s Pets, both on Lansdowne Street West.
Police spotted a suspect, who tried to run but was caught near Brealey Drive and Lansdowne Street West.
Gordon Sean Slack, 33, of Maple Avenue, Norwood, was charged with three counts of arson causing damage to property. He was to appear in court Tuesday. Police remained at all three locations, with the Ontario Fire Marshal investigating later Tuesday.
Home Hardware owner Drew Merrett told Peterborough This Week that he received a call from the fire department around midnight.
“I was thinking it was going to be a lot
worse than it was because that shed could have really taken off and gone crazy,” Merrett said. “It is all really super-dry lumber.”
City fire crews quickly got things under control, he said.
“The fire department was excellent,” Merrett said. “It was all dry wood and it was going pretty good. They soaked all the surrounding areas and did a good job containing it.”
The store lost about $200,000 in lumber, he said.
Meanwhile Peterborough County OPP are continuing to investigate after a $1-million fire early Monday morning above the Home Hardware store at 2361 County Road 45 in Norwood. The fire broke out in an upper floor apartment unit above the store in a building owned by Asphodel-Norwood Township Mayor Rodger Bonneau, badly damaging the unit, causing water damage to the store and also closing the GP Wealth Management office and the Ready and Reliable Laundromat, Global News Peterborough reported.
Two people were treated for smoke inhalation and five people were displaced from the apartments above the store, Global News Peterborough reported. There was no word as of Tuesday night whether the Norwood fire was related to the Peterborough fires.
Lonnie Schubert, left, and Chris Partridge of the Ontario Fire Marshal’s Office investigate a blaze behind Merrett Home Hardware.