UPPER VAUGHAN, N.S. – A landfill fire that lasted all day and caused a bit of a stink in the Upper Vaughan area, is now mostly out, with a few hotspots still being extinguished.
A fire was reported at the Kaizer Meadow Waste Solid Management Facility at 6:51 a.m. on July 10, and firefighters from across the Annapolis Valley and South Shore were called in to help deal with the blazing garbage.
Everett Hiltz, chief of the Chester Volunteer Fire Department said the fire could have been ongoing well before they got the call.
“Something unknown caused a fire in the farthest reach of the dump cell, the part of the landfill being used,” Hiltz said. “It was reported when crews first arrived in to work.”
Hiltz said nearly the whole side of the cell was engulfed in flames when they arrived. He described it as being roughly 300 feet long.
An excavator was digging through the landfill and firefighters were extinguishing hotspots as of 5 p.m.
He said he expects fire crews to remain on scene well into the evening.
Fire departments from across the region were called in to assist, including Hantsport, Windsor, Brooklyn, Wolfville, New Minas, Kentville, Chester, New Ross, Lunenburg and Western Shore.
Hiltz said the cause will likely remain unknown, adding that it could be anything from someone discarding a battery, to the sun reflecting off of a bottle.
the items being burned, Hiltz said the smell wasn’t the biggest worry, but the toxins and carcinogens coming off the pile were a threat to firefighters on scene. Hiltz said they made sure to keep people out of the way.
Thousands of feet of hose were required during the operation, he added.
“Landfills are a frequent challenge for us, but it really boils down to people not throwing out their household batteries in the garbage,” he said. “Just because it doesn’t work in your TV remote anymore, doesn’t mean it couldn’t cause something out here later.”
Instead of being thrown out into the trash, household batteries should be recycled.