There were two separate fires at a well known Sarnia business.. The first blaze at Abbott Boats on London Road began just after seven Saturday night in the north building.. It was brought under control by ten p-m.. Then just before five Sunday morning another fire broke out in the west building on the property.. It was also extinguished.. Several nearby residents were evacuated from the area during the first fire..
Fighting the flames; Two fires damage
Local News - Monday, June 19, 2006 @ 09:00
The office of the Ontario Fire Marshall has been called to probe the cause of two separate fires that devastated a world-renowned Sarnia boat building company over the weekend. All five of the city's fire stations responded to Abbott Boats at 1458 London Rd. shortly after 7 p.m. Saturday, while crews from Port Huron, Point Edward, Camlachie and St. Clair were on standby.
A dark plume of smoke could be seen for kilometres as a shed on the property and an unknown number of boats became engulfed in flames. Hundreds of residents in nearby apartments were evacuated for several hours and the area cordoned off, due to concerns about toxic materials burning, including fibreglass. Residents from the Sarnia-Lambton Berean Community Housing complex on Old Exmouth Street were taken to Lambton Mall until they were allowed to return at around 10:30 p.m. ...
Nearby residents were evacuated again around 5 a.m. after a second fire broke out on the property, Marshall said. The second call was unrelated to the first fire and caused "extensive" damage to the woodworking and finishing shop on the property, he said. Calum McCaskill, superintendent of the Berean community housing complex, said the second fire was just as big or bigger than the first. "Flames were shooting 20-to-30 feet high," he said, adding the skies again filled with smoke even heavier than the night before.
As of press time, fire officials had not determined the cause of the fire or a damage estimate. It's not known how many boats were damaged. The Abbott family has been operating Abbott Boats for more than 50 years, building several different lines of sailing yachts. Bill Abbott Jr., whose father founded the business, gained prominence as a sailor after competing at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney. He is currently ranked second on the Canadian match racing circuit.