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McAsphalt hit with $100k fine

By Graeme McNaughton/The Oshawa Express

McAsphault Ball of flames (web)

In January 2013, the skies of Oshawa were filled with smoke after the McAsphalt warehouse on Farewell Street caught on fire, resulting in $4 million in damage. The company has now been fined a total of $100,000 for discharging a contaminant. The charges against the company from the province came after an Ontario Fire Marshall report found the fire was likely caused by improperly installed and improperly maintained metal halide lights. (Oshawa Express file photo)

Nearly three years after a warehouse fire caused millions of dollars of damage by the city’s harbour, the site’s operator has been hit by a fine from the province.

McAsphalt, the company which ran the warehouse, was handed an $80,000 fine along with a $20,000 victim fine surcharge by the province after pleading guilty to discharging a contaminant, mainly smoke, into the environment.

The fire began in the early morning hours of Jan. 19, 2013, and resulted in the evacuation of several nearby businesses after wind picked up the billowing cloud of smoke. This marked the first time the city enacted its emergency plan in nearly a decade, according to a city report issued at the time. It took the work of approximately 35 firefighters from both Oshawa and Clarington to bring to blaze under control, although some remained on scene for a few days afterwards to monitor hot spots in the wreckage, ensuring the fire didn’t start up again.

The fire resulted in approximately $4 million in damages.

Charges were brought against McAsphalt by the province after a report by the province’s fire marshall found that the most likely cause for the blaze was improperly installed and improperly maintained metal halide lights.

Representatives from McAsphalt did not return The Oshawa Express’ request for comment before press time.