Edmonton

Heat torch believed to be responsible for Southgate Centre fire

A heat torch is the suspected cause of a fire on the roof of an Edmonton shopping mall.

Damages are estimated to be $1 million

Investigators believe a heat torch caused a fire on the roof of the Hudson's Bay store in Southgate Centre. (Dave Bajer/CBC)

A heat torch is the suspected cause of a fire on the roof of an Edmonton shopping mall on Friday.

The flames ignited on the roof of the Hudson's Bay store at Southgate Centre, which is under construction.

"They determined it was basically residual heat from a heat torch that was being used that ignited some of the construction materials along an expansion joint that the construction team was working on," Edmonton Fire Rescue spokesperson Rowan Anderson said Sunday.

The cost of the fire is estimated at $1 million, accounting for both destroyed construction materials and damage to the roof itself.

When crews arrived early Friday, flames were shooting up from the roof of the store. Firefighters used a bucket lift to reach the roof.

There was no one inside the store at the time of the fire and no injuries. The rest of the mall was not affected.

Southgate Centre, at the corner of 51st Avenue and 111th Street, has 165 retailers.

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