N.B. man faces impaired driving charge after fire hall damaged by fire
A New Brunswick man is facing a number of charges, including impaired driving, after allegedly crashing his pickup truck into the Nackawic Fire Hall, sparking a fire in the building.
Police and fire crews responded to the fire around 7:30 a.m. Monday.
“I noticed the guy sort of driving weird so I seen him pull into the fire hall and then all I hear is a ‘bang’ and a cloud of smoke come up,” says witness Matt McBride.
McBride says he had just arrived at work, located down the street from the fire hall. He says the fire was raging by the time he arrived on scene.
“I showed up and there’s probably 15-foot flames,” he says. “The whole front of the fire hall was basically on fire.”
Firefighters were on scene almost immediately. They scrambled to save their equipment but when the garage doors failed to open, they crashed their fire trucks through them.
One firefighter sustained minor injuries.
“He drove right into the fire hall and it was burning hard,” says Nackawic Fire Capt. Leo Lanteigne. “I told the guy that’s in the hospital right now, run in and get that truck out, number four, so we have one.”
Three of the department’s four trucks, and much of its equipment, sustained significant damage in the fire.
"We were just here Saturday having a fireman's breakfast and they put a lot of work into raising money to replace equipment and here we go, in one fell swoop, a tremendous amount of equipment is already gone," says Tobique-Mactaquac MP Mike Allen.
Despite the losses, the department remains operational. Two trucks are now on loan from other departments.
“We’ve been given two trucks to go with the one that we have that’s still operational and we’re looking at getting set up in the former DNR building over in the Industrial Park,” says Nackawic Fire Chief William Hopkins. “They have a garage over there and an office so we should be able to set up over there.”
The driver of the pickup truck, 56-year-old Edwin Samuel Bradley of Nackawic, was arrested outside the fire hall. Police say he has been charged with impaired driving, refusal to provide a breath sample and breaching his conditions in connection with the incident.
Bradley will remain in custody until Thursday, when he is due in court for a show cause hearing.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Andy Campbell