Guelph-Eramosa fire responds to two fires over weekend

GUELPH-ERAMOSA – Guelph-Eramosa firefighters responded to two fires on July 26.

The first was at 104 Henry St. in Rockwood.

Jim Petrik, deputy fire chief, said the call about a chimney fire came in around 7am.

“I guess they had the air conditioner on overnight and the house was too chilly. So they lit a small fire,” Petrik said.

That led to a chimney fire, but Petrik said the homeowners had it extinguished by the time firefighters arrived.

Petrik said firefighters checked to make sure there were no other hot spots in the house prior to leaving.

The second fire, called in around 1pm on Sunday, was more substantial, he said.

This one was a 50-acre wheat field on Jones Baseline that had caught fire.

“They were combining wheat in the field and somehow the fire started,” Petrik said. “The wheat is dry before harvesting and the high winds made the fire spread rapidly. We could see significant smoke as we arrived on scene.”

Petrik said he called Guelph and Puslinch fire departments to assist.

They managed to keep the fire from nearing the barn and got it out before it reached a tree line.

“That would have been really bad, if it got into the bush,” Petrik said.

Guelph emergency medical services set up a rehab station for firefighters to cool off. It was already a hot day and the fire made it hotter.

It was important to keep the firefighters safe and hydrated while working, Petrik said. But there was no damage to buildings or animals or people, he said, “although the farmer had a large loss of wheat.”