Fire forces closure of Williams Lake mill

By Greg Fry
November 3, 2017 - 1:00pm Updated: November 3, 2017 - 5:56pm

KAMLOOPS — Updated: Tolko Industries says a mill fire at its Lakeview operation in Williams Lake has been extinguished.

The company says it will monitor the situation to ensure there are no flare-ups in the coming days.

It adds the Lakeview planer will return to operation on Monday with three shifts.

On Saturday, Tolko says structural engineers will be on site to begin assessing the fire damage. No word yet on when the mill will return to full operations.

No word yet on the cause of the fire.


Earlier: Approximately 175 employees are temporarily out of work following a mill fire in Williams Lake.

The fire broke out just before 6:30 last night at Tolko Industries Lakeview mill.

Communications advisor Janice Lockyer says the sawmill and planer will not operate as a result of the fire today and that "supervisors will be contacting employees directly to share additional details as they become available."

"We cannot comment on the extent of the damage to the structure at this time as we do not have access to the interior of the sawmill," she adds. "We will have more information when the fire is out and following an examination of the affected areas by structural engineers. We anticipate this assessment will occur over the weekend and into next week."

Lockyer says an evacuation of the mill "went smoothly and there were no injuries." 

She says the priority now will be to ensure the fire is out and to put a recovery plan in place to get the mill operating again.


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