Highway 4 was shut down for hours on May 27 as local firefighters worked to extinguish a truck fire.
“A truck hauling a load of oriented strand board (OSB) from the mill caught fire just south of town. It was headed south.
The truck itself caught fire and it spread into the load,” explained Meadow Lake Fire Chief Neil Marsh. “The most likely thing is something to do with the brakes — some kind of mechanical failure.”
A man at the scene who appeared to be the driver of the vehicle and did not want to share his name stated that the fire began after his tires started smoking and a fire started in the truck.
Seven crew members from the Meadow Lake Fire Department responded to the call and battled the fire.
“No people were injured, but the road was closed for a little while while the fire was extinguished and the debris was moved off the road. But it’s back open now and everything’s good to go,” said Corporal Rob Fines of the Meadow Lake RCMP.
Three RCMP officers responded to the incident.
“It was not a freak accident, but something that just kind of happens,” Fines said.
Marsh said the blaze was a challenge.
“It was difficult to put out. We had the highway shut down for a few hours. We needed to bring in some forklifts and a lot of water.”
Contractors from Meadow Lake drove out to lend their help and used forklifts to topple the smouldering load of OSB from the truck bed.
“Luckily it wasn’t far from town,” Marsh observed.
The fire was put out successfully.
“The truck itself was heavily-damaged and the bundles of OSB were burned,” said Marsh, adding that he couldn’t speculate as to the value of the wood ruined.
“It was accidental. I guess the best anyone can do is make sure your equipment is in good condition and well-maintained.”