A fire broke out at Kentrax Transport in Rocanville late Tuesday night, destroying the business’s wash bay as well as part of the service building.
Rocanville Fire Chief Rob Turnbull says that when the fire department arrived on the scene around midnight, the wash bay was fully engulfed in flames.
He says they called on the Moosomin fire department to help battle the blaze.
“It’s always difficult when you are battling a fire in a tin or sheet metal structure because it collapses in on itself and holds the flames and smolders,” says Turnbull. “We had a local guy with a trackhoe who came and helped us with spreading out the tin and exposing it.
“We called Moosomin in for mutual aid for support and they were awesome, they came out and did a heck of a job.”
Turnbull says it took five or six hours to get the fire under control. He says fires inside metal buildings always pose a challenge.
“You have tin inside, then your wood structure, then tin outside, so you just have a great big oven that crashes in on itself. Unless you can separate it somehow, then you’re just basically letting it burn itself.”
He says the fire department had to tear the building apart, but tried to salvage as much as they could.
He says people in the community came out to help during the fire.
“I noticed a lot of community members were helping in any way they could,” he says.
Tracy Kingdon, who owns and runs Kentrax Transport along with her husband Ken, says the fire will have an impact on their business.
Kentrax Transport is a trucking company that specializes in hauling grain, fertilizer, equipment, water and gravel.
“It’s going to have an impact on our business because we’re pretty dependent on our wash bay,” she says.
While some of the building was left standing, Kingdon says it will likely have to be demolished.
“Most of the other shop will have to be torn down. I think it’s too damaged to build onto,” she says.
She says Kentrax is still open for business, but they will need to find some way to make do until they can rebuild.
“We have a smaller shop at the farm that we might have to move to, but we don’t know that yet,” she says. “We hope to rebuild as soon as possible. We’ll have to make due in the interim just to get by.”
Kingdon says she and Ken are thankful to people in the community who came out to offer help during the fire and who have offered to help since the fire. She says they are also thankful to their staff who helped during the fire.
“We’d like to thank all the community for helping the night of the fire,” she says. “Lots of people have been offering to help with the cleanup too. We’re very proud to live in a small community.”
She says it’s too soon to be able to tell if they can rebuild on the same location, but they will continue to operate as normally as possible until they rebuild.
“There’s not much you can do—just keep plugging away, get it cleaned up and rebuild and go again,” she says.
Turnbull says it’s undetermined as to what caused the fire, but because the wash bay was fully engulfed in flames when fire crews arrived, it appears that’s where the fire started.
A fire commissioner was scheduled to investigate the site of the fire on Friday.