Firefighters from four departments spent about seven hours battling a structure fire near Highway 2 on Friday.
Crews from Lacombe, Bentley, Clive and Blackfalds were called to Scholing Produce Farms, located north of Lacombe, shortly after 8 a.m. on Friday to a report of a smoke coming from a shop on the farm’s property.
Lacombe Fire Chief Ed Van Delden said when they arrived on scene, the building was largely engulfed, although it was difficult to tell from an outside perspective how far along fire was as there were no windows.
“There was smoke rolling out of the rafters all around the building and certainly venting from a fire outlet in one corner,” said Van Delden.
Because of where the building was, there was no access to fire hydrants or a fixed water supply. Crews had to get their tankers on scene to battle the blaze.
The building and its contents are a total loss as a result of the fire.
“Our approach was get big quick,” said Van Delden. “Our tankers were all used. It was an all-day thing, rotating people through so they can refresh. It takes a lot of people.”
Investigators were on scene over the weekend assessing the cause of the fire.
Van Delden said first reports indicated a spark got away from people working in the building and that started the fire.
“They did notice a fire and tried to put it out with extinguishers and they were unsuccessful as it grew pretty rapidly,” said Van Delden.
The wood-framed, metal-skinned shop went up fairly quickly.
“Imagine your own garage, but 20 times larger,” said Val Delden. “Even the metal skin made it worse. Metal collects and transfers heat well and the extension of the fire is pretty rapidly.”
As well as the loss of the shop, several tools and vehicles that were located inside the building were destroyed as a result of the fire.
No one was injured as a result of the fire.