Fire burns boiler room of Cornwallis barracks
© Jonathan Riley
Brighton Barton chief Cliff Surette maneuvers the aerial ladder into position.
By Jonathan Riley
Fire fighters stopped a fire from destroying a barracks on the former Cornwallis base.
A fire alarm went off in the dorm Monday morning just after 6 a.m.
The barracks are often used by sea cadets in the summer but have been empty for weeks.
Bear River called for mutual aid from Smith’s Cove, Digby, Annapolis and Brighton Barton.
Flames were shooting out of the utility shed and boiler room at the back of the dorm at 220 Atlantic Avenue when Bear River arrived.
While exterior crews knocked that down on the western or water side, interior teams advanced through the dorm’s eastern doors.
The fire had just travelled into the attic of the main dorm building when firefighters broke through the ceiling and cut it off.
Fire fighters used Brighton Barton’s aerial ladder to chase hot spots through the eaves and up the dorm roof.
The utility shed and boiler room was completely consumed by fire. The bathrooms in the middle section of the dorm suffered extensive fire, smoke and water damage.
Fire fighters left the scene just before 11 a.m.
Annapolis RCMP also responded to the fire and say the fire has been deemed suspicious in origin and police are being assisted by the Provincial Fire Investigator's Office.
“This particular building, which is owned by the Annapolis Basin Conference Center, houses the Camp Acadia Sea Cadets during the summer months,” said RCMP Cpl. Dale Guy.
He said investigators are asking anyone who might have seen suspicious activity in the area to contact them. People can contact the Annapolis District RCMP at 902-665-4481or Nova Scotia Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), texting TIP202 + your message to "CRIMES" (274637) or by Secure Web Tips at www.crimestoppers.ns.ca . Calls to Crime Stoppers are not taped or traced and if police make an arrest and lay charges based on a tip, callers qualify for a cash reward from $50 - $2000.
The cause of the fire has not been determined and the investigation is continuing.