Second large fire at XL Wood Products

In this provided photo, flames engulf a building at XL Wood Products in Green Valley, Ont. on Monday, June 14, 2021. The fire -- the second one in less than a year -- is under investigation. (SGFS/Twitter via Newswatch Group)

GREEN VALLEY – XL Wood Products in Green Valley has been dealt another blow with a large fire.

It’s the second time in less than a year.

The latest fire started around 12:30 a.m. this morning (Monday) at the wood pallet manufacturing company on Concession Road 8, east of County Road 34.

In an interview with Cornwall Newswatch, Fire Chief Dave Robertson says manpower from all five fire stations in South Glengarry as well as manpower and fire trucks from two stations from North Glengarry fought the fire.

“We found heavy fire on one portion of the structure rapidly spreading throughout, due to the building construction type and fuel load within the building. The building is a complete loss,” Robertson said.

He says it was challenging for firefighters since the building was large at 125 meters (410 feet) long. “It was quite a large fire.”

The chief says this fire was in an existing building on a different area of the property from where November’s fire destroyed three interconnected buildings.

“This was a completely separate set of buildings all within the same property location but it was in a different section of the yard,” Robertson said.

An investigation is underway by South Glengarry Fire Services, the Ontario Fire Marshal and representatives from the insurance companies.

At this point in the investigation, Robertson couldn’t say whether the fire was suspicious in nature.

With thunderstorms rolling through SD&G in the early hours of Monday, Robertson adds that lightning is being looked at as a possible factor.

“That’s one of the items we’re investigating. There was storm activity in the area at the time but nothing determined as far as whether that was part of the cause,” the chief said.

There were no injuries.

XL Wood Products had recently cleared a number of red tape items with South Glengarry council in order to start rebuilding – a venture estimated to cost $2.5 million to $3 million.