'It's a pretty big shocker': Sask. small town loses pharmacy to fire
Bengough, Sask., lost its main general store and pharmacy to a fire on Sunday
Another Saskatchewan small town has lost a big part of its community.
The town of Bengough, Sask., watched its long-standing pharmacy and general store, Bengough Drugs, burn to the ground on Sunday evening.
Coronach RCMP Const. Billy Gossen told CBC News the fire call came in just after 5 p.m. CST on Oct. 9.
Upon arrival, firefighters found heavy smoke billowing from the massive warehouse-type structure. But no flames were showing and firefighters had trouble fighting the fire because of thick concrete and steel walls encasing the flames.
<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/bengough?src=hash">#bengough</a> has lost a landmark <a href="https://twitter.com/CBCSask">@CBCSask</a> <a href="https://t.co/NZFcLHzMrj">pic.twitter.com/NZFcLHzMrj</a>—@SarahNicolNP
Once emergency crews were able to knock down a couple of walls is when things really heated up.
"All of a sudden you could see the flames coming out from on top of the building because it got so hot. It took a while to knock down because the building had so much stuff inside is what I've been told," Gossen said.
He added bystanders around the blaze talked about how many people in the community depended on the pharmacy and general store.
"I overheard a lot of locals talking and they were very concerned because it was the main store in the town. My understanding is that it was a one-stop shop," Gossen said
"It's a pretty big shocker to the community."
Gossen said the Bengough volunteer fire department had to call in reinforcements from Coronach and Willow Bunch to help fight the fire.
An initial investigation shows the fire started in the attic of the building and it is not suspicious. Gossen added no one was inside the building and no injuries came from the fire.
The building is considered a total loss. Bengough is about 148 kilometres southwest of Regina.
At 8 a.m. on Sunday, a fire broke out at the century-old Clarendon Hotel in Gull Lake, Sask., about 300 kilometres west of Bengough. That fire was also considered a total loss.
With files from Roxanna Woloshyn