Investigation begins as massive Walkverville warehouse fire is out
Published Thursday, September 20, 2018 9:48AM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, September 20, 2018 8:59PM EDT
An Ontario Fire Marshal investigator will be looking for what sparked a massive warehouse fire in the Walkerville area.
The 57,000 square-foot building was for sale and listed at $1.95 million.
Windsor Fire and Rescue crews were called after 11 a.m. on Wednesday to a warehouse formerly operated by Gel Tech near Argyle Road and Ottawa Street.
Plumes of black smoke could be seen for miles and emergency officials first told residents during the noon hour to close their windows and doors and to stay indoors.
The fire was finally declared out around 7:30 a.m. Thursday, about 20 hours after the initial call, and no one was injured.
While the fire was still going earlier, a voluntary evacuation was declared for residents from Ottawa Street to Shepherd Street and Argyle Road to Kildare Road. The city offered the Gino Marcus Community Centre as a place for residents to stay in the interim.
The Market Square, Shoppers Drug Mart and a bingo building nearby were all evacuated as a precaution, as dozens of onlookers watched crews fight the fire.
Chief fire prevention officer John Lee says the fumes were not toxic, but they continued the order for residents as a precaution.
60 firefighters attacked the blaze with multiple aerial trucks dumping the equivalent of ten Olympic-sized swimming pools on the inferno.
The OFM was on scene by Thursday afternoon.
Before the blaze, the lone tenant was an auto restoration shop.
One person, who did not want to named, said a number of vehicles were lost. But Lee tells CTV News to his knowledge, "they were able to get all of the vehicles out successfully, no damage was incurred to all of the vehicles."
The investigation into the cause of the fire is expected to take a number of days.
Here’s a few photos showing what’s left of 1370 Argyle Rd. @WindsorFire1’s John Lee says it took the better part of 20 hours to snuff the flames and heavy smoke. @CTVWindsor pic.twitter.com/liWgCRlAQB— Rich Garton (@RichGartonCTV) September 20, 2018
Before the blaze: The property at 1370 Argyle in Walkerville area was listed for $1.95 million by Manor Realty. An Ontario Fire Marshal will be in town this afternoon to investigate the blaze at the 48,000 square foot light industrial building. @CTVWindsor pic.twitter.com/qsz6PqH5VL— Rich Garton (@RichGartonCTV) September 20, 2018