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Sudbury truck shop fire causes $10M in damage

The fire marshal is still investigating the cause of a weekend blaze at Sudbury Truck and Trailer Centre.

A Dec. 31 fire at a Sudbury truck repair shop has caused an estimated $10 million in damage.

Fire crews were called to Sudbury Truck and Trailer Centre on the morning of Dec. 31 after a blaze broke out at the 55,000-square-foot shop, located on 15 acres in the city’s Flour Mill neighbourhood.

Residents around the shop were evacuated Saturday, either to a nearby school or to the homes of family and friends. The Red Cross was called in to help with the response.

Five stations responded to the fire, including eight trucks and 36 firefighters. The fire was brought under control later that afternoon, and the Fire Marshal’s Office was called in to investigate.

Investigator James Allen said Tuesday no cause has been determined as yet, but they know where the blaze began.

"The origin of the fire was in the middle south west section of that building,” Allen said. “Right now, we're looking at potential causes within that area."

Allen said he was still collecting information on how the fire started.

"It is a truck and trailer facility, so there lots of tools, lots of acetylene torches and other things inside that area," he said.

"We're just collecting some paperwork, some witness statements. Once I have that all done, I'll have enough to sit down and write a report."

There were no injuries as a result of the fire, but residents reported ash rained down across the Flour Mill. The age of the building played a role, Allen said.

“It's an older building, older construction, so you had a wood roof with tar,” he said. “So a lot of that tar and pieces of insulation, with the wind, once you get the heat it will rise and travel a fair distance.

“But that stuff dissipates in the air after awhile.”

Sudbury Truck and Trailer Centre has been in business since 1955 and currently offers complete truck and trailer repair services, including welding and spring repair, dump body installations, hydraulic repair, fabrication, driveline manufacture and machining, and more.

Customers include Commercial Transport, Manitoulin Transport, Laidlaw Carriers, BM Metals, CP Rail, Hydro One, Vale, Atlas Copco, and Guse Carriers.

The shop employs 50 people.

Darren MacDonald

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