NL Housing unit heavily damaged by fire

Louis Power
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Text and photos by Joe Gibbons—The Telegram

Firefighters from four St. John's Regional Fire Department fire stations — Kenmount, West End, Central and Kent's Pond — were dispatched to a structure fire on the corner of Old Pennywell Road and Prospero Place in the city's north end around 12:15 a.m. today.

Upon arrival, crews from the Kenmount station were met with heavy fire and smoke issuing from the building, a Newfoundland and Labrador Housing unit that was under renovations. Neighbours at the scene said flames were as high as the light pole on the street near the home.

One area resident said she never saw anything like it, while another was heard saying he "had to run and close all the windows" in his house, due to the smoke. 

The RNC had to close all roads in the area from pedestrian and vehicular traffic while firefighter crews quickly knocked down the fire. Some were able to avail of the scaffolding surrounding the home to climb it and ventilate the structure by cutting and chopping holes around the dwelling.

Once the bulk of the fire was knocked down, crews were able to enter and knock out plywood that was covering the windows around the home to ventilate the home from smoke. The unit was heavily damaged from the fire, especially the front of the home, which was completely charred from the flames.

The last of the firefighter crews left just before 1:30 a.m. this morning and the scene was then turned over to the RNC, to secure the area overnight until fire investigators can sift through the damage later today to detemine a possible cause of the fire.

Organizations: Newfoundland and Labrador Housing

Geographic location: St. John's, West End, Kent Old Pennywell Road Prospero Place

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Recent comments

  • Enlightened unlike Some
    August 28, 2012 - 12:11

    @ Ed Fry. You sir are an ignoramus (look it up). A friend of mine was a 'skeet' living in housing as a single mother of three. She worked the whole time and went to school. She is now a nurse and this year bought a house and a new car. So, Mr. Fry, make sure you ask for a background check when you recieve your free medical care from the taxpayers of this country, wouldn't want to be treated by a skeet now would you?

  • Rob
    August 28, 2012 - 10:32

    I'm sick too my stomach from hearing people talk about people on welfare being skeets. Ed Fry comments you make are not called for. Theres good people on welfare and Im sure you or someone in your family that they know has been on welfare. Talk about the fire thats the news not welfare people. There is working class on Prospero. We all know whos the dumb ass!

  • VILLERGIRL
    August 28, 2012 - 08:31

    Welfare Skeet? Have the Skeets around St. John's come from parents in Airport or Cowan Heights.. get a Life ED!

  • ANDREW
    August 28, 2012 - 08:29

    The idea behind whether or not this was caused by a welfare recipient is irrelevant. I live on the same street and we all know it was young teenagers who were determined to burn this housing unit down, and had tried several times before. Welfare, no welfare, the real cause of this fire was horrible, misguided parenting, which appears to be an epidemic in this province.

  • Marg
    August 28, 2012 - 07:52

    Ed, You are forming conclusions before the investigation is even started, let alone completed. I agree that there are young healthy people receiving social assistance that should be working and not leeching off us taxpayers, but that doesn't mean the fire was arson set by a welfare recipient.

  • Ed Fry
    August 28, 2012 - 06:36

    More welfare skeets doing what they do best - not working and costing the rest of us LOTS of money.

    • Chantal
      August 28, 2012 - 07:11

      What does this have to do with "welfare skeets?" Maybe it was the work of an ignorant, bigoted ar$e.