McGillivray Boulevard fire under control, building ‘a total loss’ fire chief says

A building near Oak Bluff, Man., just west of Winnipeg, is said to be a total loss — with damages in the millions of dollars — following a dramatic fire that sprang up Wednesday, according to the fire chief tackling the blaze.

Mike Siemens, with the Rural Municipality of Macdonald fire department, said the fire was declared under control around 6 a.m. Thursday, and crews were busy putting out hot spots into the afternoon.

Siemens told Global News the cause of the fire is not yet known, but initial indications are the fire started on the exterior of the building and quickly extended inwards with the aid of a ruptured natural gas line.

Read more: Crews remain on scene as fire at Oak Bluff business continues to burn

A City of Winnipeg spokesperson says the fire occurred in the 2500 block of McGillivray Boulevard.

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A Global News videographer at the scene Wednesday said the smoke appeared to be coming from Pool Pros Ltd., at 2595-B McGillivray Blvd.

Large plumes of black smoke could be seen over the city Wednesday.

Siemens says there was only “minor concerns” about hazardous material at the site, and that minimal amounts of chemicals were actually stored inside.

There were initial concerns about the blaze spreading and turning into a grass fire so equipment was used to make windrows, but the fire never actually made it that far.

The City of Winnipeg says Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service (WFPS) crews shuttled water to the scene, and used a drone to monitor the situation.

WFPS departed around 2:35 a.m.

Read more: Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service calls string of early-morning garbage bin fires ‘suspicious’

The Winnipeg Police Service advised McGillivray Boulevard was closed between Kenaston Boulevard and the Perimeter Highway for some time while crews fought the blaze, but traffic was flowing again Thursday.

Siemens says the property remains off-limits, and if anyone should drive by, they’re encouraged to maintain speed and not stop to watch crews working.

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With files from Shane Gibson

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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