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Two fires keep West Prince Mutual Aid busy

A vacant house in Bloomfield was one of two fires West Prince fire departments fought Monday night.
A vacant house in Bloomfield was one of two fires West Prince fire departments fought Monday night. - Eric McCarthy

Barn fire in Nail Pond; abandoned house burns in Bloomfield

NAIL POND, P.E.I. - A barn and equipment in Nail Pond and a vacant house in Bloomfield were destroyed by fire Monday in what was a busy night for West Prince Mutual Aid.

The Tignish Fire Department was dispatched to Clohossey’s Farms in Nail Pond shortly before 11 p.m. and called in Miminegash and Alberton departments for back-up in fighting the huge fire.

Just minutes later the O’Leary Fire Department got dispatched to a house fire in Bloomfield and called in West Point for assistance. Normally, they would also call in Miminegash or Alberton for support in fighting a structural fire, but with those two departments already engaged, they activated a mutual aid call to Tyne Valley. Once it was determined the house was vacant and beyond saving, O’Leary turned the Tyne Valley Fire Department around while they were en route.

Tignish Fire Chief Allan Gavin said the loss in the Nail Pond fire is extensive.

“She was pretty well down when we got there,” he said of the main barn. By then, the fire was starting to follow the roofline of an adjacent barn. He said that barn also sustained structural damage but he believes the equipment inside was spared.

They were hampered in their fire-fighting by strong wind. “We were lucky it didn’t catch into the other barn because, with that wind, a little bit of air and she was done,” he said in describing how close they came to losing the second barn which was attached to the destroyed structure by a breezeway.

Two tractors, other farm equipment a motorcycle and 4-wheeler were destroyed.

Gavin said they pumped about 35,000 gallons of water on the fire and cleared the scene around 3 a.m. Tignish was called back to deal with a flare-up Tuesday morning.

The provincial fire marshal’s office is still investigating the cause of the Nail Pond fire.

The Bloomfield fire has been turned over to the RCMP to investigate. There was no power to the house which had been vacant for about 10 years. An excavator was delivered to the property Monday afternoon and RCMP has determined the house was under a demolition order.

O’Leary fire chief Ron Phillips said the O’Leary and West Point departments used about 15,000 gallons of water to put out the fire at a house already destroyed by the time they arrived. The strong wind was blowing embers into a snow-covered field.

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