Nova Scotia

Fire damages lumber plant in Weymouth

Multiple fire crews battled a fire at a moulding plant in southwestern Nova Scotia Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning.

Crews were still on scene 12 hours later extinguishing hot spots

Smoke was still rising from behind the plant Wednesday morning after crews worked to put out the fire all night. (Submitted by Angela Whiteley)

Multiple fire crews battled a fire at a plant that makes wood moulding in southwestern Nova Scotia Tuesday evening and into Wednesday morning.

Fire Chief Doug Cromwell of the Southville Fire Department said they were paged Tuesday around 6:45 p.m. about "quite a fire" at Lewis Mouldings in Weymouth.

Lewis Mouldings creates trim, made from eastern white pine, for the housing market. They also recently expanded into using wood waste to create compressed bricks, which can be used as an alternative to firewood.

Jamie Lewis, a co-owner of the plant, said in an interview Wednesday morning with the CBC's Information Morning that some crews are still on the scene digging for hot spots to extinguish.

Lewis said some of the volunteer firefighters from Weymouth are workers at the plant.

"We've got great people and that's the hardest part about this," he said.

Locals devastated

Cromwell estimated the plant has about 90 employees.

"I think that's the last big business in the area," he said.

Cromwell said he wasn't sure exactly how large or intense the fire was, but had heard it was situated toward the back of the building.

Angela Whiteley, who lives in Weymouth, was at the scene Tuesday night when the fire was at its worst. She said it was hard to tell how bad it was because it was dark.

"It honestly, it felt like they would have lost the whole building," she said.

Whiteley said it is devastating for the community. 

Fire departments from Weymouth, Digby and the surrounding areas were called in to fight the fire and support other crews.

According to a post by Dahl Dispatch, an emergency dispatch page on Facebook, relief crews were called in after 6 a.m. Wednesday.

There were 22 crews called in total. 

Lewis couldn't say what the total damage to the building is, but said the back half is "gone."

A worker bags fibre fuel bricks at Lewis Mouldings in Weymouth in this file photo. The plant caught fire Tuesday and burned into Wednesday morning. (Pam Berman/CBC)

Although his family is hurting, he is glad no one was hurt.

"Just thankful everybody is safe and realize that it's just a building right now, and there's people all through Nova Scotia and all through the world going through stuff that's a lot worse than this," he said.

With files from Information Morning Nova Scotia.