Damage estimated in the millions, ‘several’ aircraft lost
A late night fire destroyed a Transwest Air maintenance hangar and caused millions of dollars worth of damage Sunday.
Fire crews responded to the Prince Albert Municipal Airport at about 11:24 p.m. on April 15, arriving to find a hangar with heavy fire inside. The fire spread rapidly, preventing firefighters from attacking the fire from the inside.
Crews worked to prevent the fire from spreading to nearby structures, and shortly after they arrived, portions of the wood building began to collapse.
On 15 April 2018 at approximately 11:24pm, PA fire crews responded to a reported structure fire at the Prince Albert…
No one was injured in the fire.
Monday afternoon, a crew remained on scene, battling hotspots and pouring water on the smouldering hangar remains.
The acrid stench of burnt rubber and plastic remained in the air, and access to the area was closed off with barricades. Charred bits from the fire were strewn across the ground at the airport, reaching as far as the public parking lot. Burned out trucks, cars and planes could be seen among the fire’s wreckage.
As of Monday afternoon, there was little Transwest could say.
“We’re just awaiting the fire investigation. We have no idea what the cause of it is at this point,” Transwest Air spokesperson Patty Hughes said.
“We’re busy trying to set up operations and continue on here in Prince Albert.”
Hughes confirmed there were several aircraft lost in the fire. She said the company is still assessing the contents of the hangar, and what the losses could be.
CBC reported between two and six aircraft was lost. Global News indicated it was two planes and two helicopters.
Hughes declined to comment on the number or type of aircraft lost.
“We have (an idea), but we’re not going to say at this moment,” she said. “There are a lot of other things that were in there as well.”
She confirmed the estimated damage was “well into the millions.”
Despite the loss, it’s business as usual at Transwest Air.
“Thankfully we are a very large and diverse company, and we have other maintenance facilities in our organizational structure, so we’ve ben able to work and send out employees to those other locations to make sure business continues on,” Hughes said.
“We have some other building assets in Prince Albert, and we’ve been busy moving into those facilities this morning and making sure those are operational.”