Editor’s Note: The following is an exclusive interview conducted by Truck Camper Magazine with Keith Donkin, general manager for Northern Lite Manufacturing, reporting that the Kelowna, British Columbia-based truck camper builder is going to rebuild after a devastating fire in February. RVBUSINESS.com received permission to publish the first part of the interview. To read the entire story click here.
TCM: Tell us what happened.
Keith: On the morning of February 26, 2014, my dad received a call just after midnight. The fire alarm at the factory had been triggered and there was a fire at the plant.
After Dad left, Mom phoned me. Dad arrived at the plant earlier than I did and the fire trucks were just ahead of him. When they got there, smoke was coming from all sides of the building. The fire was heavily involved after that.
The firemen attempted to enter the office to recover computer equipment, but it was spreading too fast. There was a lot of wood and other combustible material in the factory. Once the fire got going, it went fast. The plant burned aggressively for eighteen hours. There were fourteen campers on the line at the time of the fire.
The cause of the fire has not been figured out. We do know that it didn’t start in the fiberglass or cabinet shop. The fire started in the middle of the factory, but it burned so hot that the investigators couldn’t find the real cause.
We are sure there was no arson because the security system was not triggered. There was nothing suspicious about the fire. It could have been caused by a roof top heating unit, but we don’t know. Experts from Vancouver were brought in to investigate, but even they determined the fire burned too hot to know the exact cause.
Once the fire was out, there was an environmental study done to look over the building and property. That process took five weeks. This past Thursday we got the report that the site and building are not contaminated.
Demolition started on Thursday and the site is completely cleared at this point. Only the existing floor and one tilt up wall are left.
To read the entire story click here.