Smoke billows from industrial fire

News Aug 25, 2009 Ancaster News

A thick plume of smoke blanketed Ancaster and the surrounding area Tuesday morning as firefighters battled an industrial blaze in the Ancaster Business Park.

The three alarm fire broke out shortly after 3 a.m. Tuesday morning. Hamilton fire safety officer John Verbeek said the building was fully involved when firefighters arrived. Dozens of firefighters continued to douse the blaze throughout the morning, as thick smoke billowed from the roof of the building.

Firefighters were evacuated from the building due to safety concerns.

“We decided to take a defensive stand,” said Mr. Verbeek.

Archmill House is a high end manufacturer of industrial millwork and office furniture located at the corner of Osprey and Sandhill Drives. The cause of the blaze was not immediately known, but early reports indicated a propane tank exploded at the rear of the building, igniting the building’s roof. No injuries were reported and no one was in the building when the fire began.

Mr. Verbeek said the building contained about 4,000 aerosol cans containing a flammable glue product. As bad as the blaze appeared, it could have been worse. Mr. Verbeek said three propane tanks behind the building were safely removed. Mr. Verbeek said the building also contained flammable polyethylene mouldings, wood products and flammable liquids such as laquer and paint thinner.

Mr. Verbeek said efforts have been made to contain potentially harmful douse water.

“Water is running off into a cistern and it will be vacuumed out,” he explained.

Hamilton fire service advised all area residents and businesses to shut windows and doors to avoid smoke inhalation.

Archmill House is registered with the environment ministry to handle hazardous industrial waste and liquid industrial waste.

Ministry staff were on the scene to conduct random air sampling. MOE officials were not immediately available for comment.

The thick plume of smoke could be seen from the Lincoln Alexander Parkway at Rousseaux Street, the Ancaster Village Core and throughout Hamilton Mountain. Police closed several highway ramps as a precaution, but most reopened by mid-morning.

Local resident Jason Cassis thought something was wrong with his house when he woke up at 4:30 p.m. to the strong smell of smoke and several loud popping sounds, presumably when the aerosol cans were ignited.

“It’s a thin, narrow, really toxic smell,” said Mr. Cassis, who lives about 2 kilometres from the scene. Several residents gathered to watch the fire near a police tape at the corner of Osprey and Sandhill. Patrons from the nearby Egg and I Restaurant also gathered on a hill to watch.

Ancaster Councillor Lloyd Ferguson arrived at the scene by 9 a.m. to assess the impact.

“The firefighters have done a great job responding to it,” said Mr. Ferguson. “I’m just worried about the plume.”

Andrew Janssens, owner of anDea Chocolate at 1252 Osprey Drive was worried about his $750,000 worth of inventory.

“If there’s smoke in the building, you can write off the whole inventory,” Mr. Janssens said.

Smoke billows from industrial fire

News Aug 25, 2009 Ancaster News

A thick plume of smoke blanketed Ancaster and the surrounding area Tuesday morning as firefighters battled an industrial blaze in the Ancaster Business Park.

The three alarm fire broke out shortly after 3 a.m. Tuesday morning. Hamilton fire safety officer John Verbeek said the building was fully involved when firefighters arrived. Dozens of firefighters continued to douse the blaze throughout the morning, as thick smoke billowed from the roof of the building.

Firefighters were evacuated from the building due to safety concerns.

“We decided to take a defensive stand,” said Mr. Verbeek.

Archmill House is a high end manufacturer of industrial millwork and office furniture located at the corner of Osprey and Sandhill Drives. The cause of the blaze was not immediately known, but early reports indicated a propane tank exploded at the rear of the building, igniting the building’s roof. No injuries were reported and no one was in the building when the fire began.

Mr. Verbeek said the building contained about 4,000 aerosol cans containing a flammable glue product. As bad as the blaze appeared, it could have been worse. Mr. Verbeek said three propane tanks behind the building were safely removed. Mr. Verbeek said the building also contained flammable polyethylene mouldings, wood products and flammable liquids such as laquer and paint thinner.

Mr. Verbeek said efforts have been made to contain potentially harmful douse water.

“Water is running off into a cistern and it will be vacuumed out,” he explained.

Hamilton fire service advised all area residents and businesses to shut windows and doors to avoid smoke inhalation.

Archmill House is registered with the environment ministry to handle hazardous industrial waste and liquid industrial waste.

Ministry staff were on the scene to conduct random air sampling. MOE officials were not immediately available for comment.

The thick plume of smoke could be seen from the Lincoln Alexander Parkway at Rousseaux Street, the Ancaster Village Core and throughout Hamilton Mountain. Police closed several highway ramps as a precaution, but most reopened by mid-morning.

Local resident Jason Cassis thought something was wrong with his house when he woke up at 4:30 p.m. to the strong smell of smoke and several loud popping sounds, presumably when the aerosol cans were ignited.

“It’s a thin, narrow, really toxic smell,” said Mr. Cassis, who lives about 2 kilometres from the scene. Several residents gathered to watch the fire near a police tape at the corner of Osprey and Sandhill. Patrons from the nearby Egg and I Restaurant also gathered on a hill to watch.

Ancaster Councillor Lloyd Ferguson arrived at the scene by 9 a.m. to assess the impact.

“The firefighters have done a great job responding to it,” said Mr. Ferguson. “I’m just worried about the plume.”

Andrew Janssens, owner of anDea Chocolate at 1252 Osprey Drive was worried about his $750,000 worth of inventory.

“If there’s smoke in the building, you can write off the whole inventory,” Mr. Janssens said.

Smoke billows from industrial fire

News Aug 25, 2009 Ancaster News

A thick plume of smoke blanketed Ancaster and the surrounding area Tuesday morning as firefighters battled an industrial blaze in the Ancaster Business Park.

The three alarm fire broke out shortly after 3 a.m. Tuesday morning. Hamilton fire safety officer John Verbeek said the building was fully involved when firefighters arrived. Dozens of firefighters continued to douse the blaze throughout the morning, as thick smoke billowed from the roof of the building.

Firefighters were evacuated from the building due to safety concerns.

“We decided to take a defensive stand,” said Mr. Verbeek.

Archmill House is a high end manufacturer of industrial millwork and office furniture located at the corner of Osprey and Sandhill Drives. The cause of the blaze was not immediately known, but early reports indicated a propane tank exploded at the rear of the building, igniting the building’s roof. No injuries were reported and no one was in the building when the fire began.

Mr. Verbeek said the building contained about 4,000 aerosol cans containing a flammable glue product. As bad as the blaze appeared, it could have been worse. Mr. Verbeek said three propane tanks behind the building were safely removed. Mr. Verbeek said the building also contained flammable polyethylene mouldings, wood products and flammable liquids such as laquer and paint thinner.

Mr. Verbeek said efforts have been made to contain potentially harmful douse water.

“Water is running off into a cistern and it will be vacuumed out,” he explained.

Hamilton fire service advised all area residents and businesses to shut windows and doors to avoid smoke inhalation.

Archmill House is registered with the environment ministry to handle hazardous industrial waste and liquid industrial waste.

Ministry staff were on the scene to conduct random air sampling. MOE officials were not immediately available for comment.

The thick plume of smoke could be seen from the Lincoln Alexander Parkway at Rousseaux Street, the Ancaster Village Core and throughout Hamilton Mountain. Police closed several highway ramps as a precaution, but most reopened by mid-morning.

Local resident Jason Cassis thought something was wrong with his house when he woke up at 4:30 p.m. to the strong smell of smoke and several loud popping sounds, presumably when the aerosol cans were ignited.

“It’s a thin, narrow, really toxic smell,” said Mr. Cassis, who lives about 2 kilometres from the scene. Several residents gathered to watch the fire near a police tape at the corner of Osprey and Sandhill. Patrons from the nearby Egg and I Restaurant also gathered on a hill to watch.

Ancaster Councillor Lloyd Ferguson arrived at the scene by 9 a.m. to assess the impact.

“The firefighters have done a great job responding to it,” said Mr. Ferguson. “I’m just worried about the plume.”

Andrew Janssens, owner of anDea Chocolate at 1252 Osprey Drive was worried about his $750,000 worth of inventory.

“If there’s smoke in the building, you can write off the whole inventory,” Mr. Janssens said.