Investigators with the Office of the Fire Marshal were onsite in Colborne on Friday, May 26, 2023 trying to determine the cause of a multi-million dollar fire to the communities only grocery store.
At approximately 5 a.m. on May 24, Cramahe Fire Department received several 9-1-1 calls reporting a fire at 25 Toronto Street which is the Foodland building which also houses two other businesses including Century Cycle and Johnston Motors.
Brighton and Cobourg Fire Departments were also dispatched for help battling the blaze.
When the flames were doused there was heavy damage to Foodland with unknown structural damage to the building.
Damage estimates to the building and contents are approximately four million dollars.
Piece by piece on Friday, parts of the building were torn off to gain access for investigators.
Fire Chief Mark MacDonald said with any fire investigation it starts from the outside, with investigators working their way inside.
“Because there was fire involvement up high, we want to make sure to get access to that, so you have to open up the building.”
MacDonald said because the fire took place in what could be classified as a mall type building it’s imperative to find a cause.
“This building has stood for four decades or more and it did not have a fire. Suddenly it had a fire.”
With many different possibilities – it’s important to find the cause.
“From a safety point of view moving forward, we want to be able to find, was there something in place that malfunctioned and that maybe we prevent a future fire in another building.”
“We learn from every fire investigation across the province – we learn that there might be something that could be done differently.”
No one was hurt in the fire.