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High winds as PAB Fire Dept. handles smoky stove

The PAB Fire Dept. responded to a smoky stove last Monday, Jan. 17. – © Ryan King / Wreckhouse Press Inc.

By Ryan King

Community News Reporter

PORT AUX BASQUES – The Channel-Port aux Basques Volunteer Fire Department responded to a call on Baird Street around 9:30 p.m. last Monday, Jan. 17. The emergency call came from a homeowner who thought that there was a potential house fire.

“We responded, two of our pumper trucks, and I’d say about 15 to 20 firefighters responded also,” said Fire Chief Jerry Musseau. “When I arrived there I met the owner. He was outside of his house and he told me that there was lots of smoke inside his home which was coming from his pellet stove. (They) Didn’t know if it was actually a fire or just the stove smoking.”

Musseau instructed two firefighters to equip themselves with breathing apparatuses to determine the source of the smoke.

“They entered the home from the back entrance of the house, because there was an entrance on the back that was close to the area the pellet stove was located. When they entered the home, they didn’t observe any signs of fire or anything, but saw a large amount of smoke coming back through the pellet stove.”

The Fire Chief suspected that high winds around that time may have prevented the stove from venting properly.

“There was that much wind on the back of the house where the vent pipe was, I would think that it couldn’t vent out to the vent pipe because of the wind,” he said. “It filled and just came back to the stove and started coming in through the stove, filling up the home with smoke.”

The firefighters did ventilate the house to remove the smoke.

“We opened up the doors and windows and the smoke started to clear from the home pretty quickly. Once that got done, we just took the remaining pellets that were left into the hopper of the stove just to be precautionary. We’ve removed that just in case it would try to ignite on its own.”

Firefighters then did a sweep of the home to check for any hot spots that could lead to a fire, and found some smoke damage to the home.

“We took the TIC camera, our thermal imaging camera, just in case to check for any hot spots around the area of the stove in the home. Everything was all good for that. There was no indication of anything hot around there after we checked it all out. Besides the smoke damage inside the house there didn’t appear to be any more damage to his home.”

No one was injured and the firefighters were on scene for approximately one hour.

“We didn’t have to use no water or anything like that, so that was good,” added Musseau.

The Fire Chief was thankful that the structure did not catch fire, as the high winds would likely have fanned the flames and endangered neighbouring homes.

“There was good breeze of wind,” said Musseau. “I could estimate 90 to 100 kilometres per hour of wind at that time. He’s close to the water’s edge there on the back where his vent pipe was. It wasn’t too major besides the smoke damage and that kind of stuff, so thank God. It wouldn’t be a good night for a big fire last night with the wind.”

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