Meat Cove, N.S. (Google)

Dangerous road conditions in northern Cape Breton are hampering the work of the local fire department, according to the fire chief.

Clayton MacKinnon, the chief of the Bay St. Lawrence Volunteer Fire Department, said the fire department tried to respond to a 911 call for a house fire in late January.

“There was three or four times where I lost control of the fire truck and had to get it back under control,” he said.


During a fire call last month, Clayton MacKinnon lost control of his fire truck three times, just barely keeping it on the road.

“Just imagine trying to go in with a thousand gallons of water on a fire truck with all that weight on clear, blue ice. You lose control you're gone.”

MacKinnon said two of his four-wheel drive trucks couldn't make it to Meat Cove because of the ice, adding there was no way an ambulance could get through.

"I was nervous that was the first thing, nervous. I was quite angry and upset in my mind. Why wasn’t the road sanded? Why wasn't it looked after better than it was?" he said.

"I'm thinking, ‘Am I going to get up there safe and am I going to get down over the other side safely."

MacKinnon said the road to Meat Cove had not been sanded or salted for eight days.

The Department of Transportation said they won’t comment until someone speaks to the fire chief.