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Blaze damages Big River Service

Derek Neary
Northern News Services

Fort Providence (Jan 23/02) - Fire caused extensive damage to Big River Service in Fort Providence Monday. The blaze took hold under the floor of the restaurant and store, forcing firefighters to use a backhoe, according to fire Chief Kelvin McLeod.

"It's quite a bit of damage... the whole building's pretty well all knocked out," he said. "We had to rip it (open) and wet everything down."

A Big River employee reported the fire at 5:30 a.m. and it wasn't extinguished until 12 hours later, according to McLeod. Nobody was injured. The assistant fire marshal is investigating the cause. The firefighters managed to save the attached former store. The motel and gasoline supply were never threatened by the blaze, said McLeod.

Big River Service, located five kilometres from Fort Providence, is a popular stop for truckers and local residents.