Firefighters in Labrador City are attempting to prevent a fire that has destroyed an apartment building under construction from spreading to a neighbouring hospital.
According to Mayor Karen Oldford, most of the unoccupied apartment complex on Booth Avenue has collapsed. She said firefighters were still at the scene as of midday Sunday.
Captain William Jackman Hospital has been evacuated, and Oldford said people have been advised to seek treatment either through the Fermont Health Centre or the Iron Ore Company of Canada’s (IOC) own medical personnel.
“If there’s an urgent or emergent (matter), they are still able to work out of the emergency department at the hospital,” said the mayor.
People dealing with a medical emergency are asked to call 709-944-2632.
The fire was first reported at approximately 3 a.m. Sunday. Events scheduled for the day at Labrador City Arena have been cancelled, and residents with breathing problems have been asked to remain indoors.
Oldford said in light of the community’s housing shortage, the loss of the yet-to-be-occupied apartment building is significant. It was set to provide living space for 108 families, many of them likely to have been employed with IOC.
An apartment building under construction in Labrador City went up in flames early Sunday morning.
The Royal Newfoundland Constabulary was called to the scene of the blaze at about 3 a.m. Police describe the damage to the building as "extensive."
The apartment complex is on Booth Avenue close to the Captain William Jackman Hospital. The health facility was evacuated as a precaution while firefighters battled the fire.
The RNC is investigating the cause of the blaze and is asking anyone with information to contact them at 944-7602 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).