Garage, manufacturing plant fires keep St. Thomas firefighters busy

St. Thomas firefighters had to deal with three separate fires over a roughly 12 hour period.

The first blaze broke out at a home in the north end of the city shortly after 6 p.m. on Thursday. A dog alerted the lone resident of the home to the fire. This allowed the man and his pooch to escape unharmed.

Off duty firefighters were called back in to help extinguish the intense flames that were coming from the attached garage of the home.

Damage is estimated at $80,000.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

The second fire call came in just before 3 a.m. on Friday. A camper trailer on Talbot Street near Alma Street was found with a smouldering fire on the exterior. Firefighters doused the fire relatively quickly.

The blaze has been deemed suspicious and St. Thomas police have taken over the investigation, the St. Thomas Fire Department said.

Firefighters used an aerial ladder to help extinguish a duct fire at Formet Industries in St. Thomas, May 5, 2023. Photo courtesy of the St. Thomas Fire Department.

Firefighters used an aerial ladder to help extinguish a duct fire at Formet Industries in St. Thomas, May 5, 2023. Photo courtesy of the St. Thomas Fire Department.

Roughly two and a half hours after the camper trailer incident, firefighters were called to Formet Industries, an automotive frame manufacturing plant on Cosma Court. An exhaust duct fire on the assembly line forced the temporary evacuation of the facility.

Again off duty firefighters had to be called back in to help put the fire out. At one point, an aerial ladder was used so firefighters could battle the blaze from above. Heavy smoke coming from the building combined with shift change at the plant created traffic issues along Talbot Street.

The fire was eventually extinguished and staff were allowed to return to work around 8 a.m.

Fire officials said a damage estimate is not available at this point, as the fire was contained to the ductwork.

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