There were no injuries, but all of the food product stored in the Community Food Sharing Association’s warehouse on Topsail Road has been contaminated by smoke and water following a fire this morning.
VOCM Cares has launched a food drive during the Irish Newfoundland Show for 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. this Saturday to help restock shelves and assist those affected by the loss. This Saturday, VOCM will be on location at the Coleman’s Food Centres on Newfoundland Drive in St. John’s and Centennial Street in Mount Pearl collecting donations for the Association.
Before then, non-perishable food donations can be dropped off at VOCM Studios on 391 Kenmount Road, and monetary donations can be made to VOCM Cares, online.
The Community Food Sharing Association needs our help! We will be hosting a food drive along with #YourVOCM this Saturday from 9am-1pm to help support the food bank after today’s warehouse fire. Further details will be provided. #SharetoCare
— VOCM Cares (@VOCMCares) January 30, 2019
Executive Director Eg Walters says the damage is extensive and devastating.
He says all the food product will have to be destroyed because it’s not fit for human consumption.
Walters says three tractor trailer loads of food had just recently arrived from Food Sharing Canada. He estimates the loss will be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The exact cause of the blaze is still under investigation.
The warehouse on Topsail Road was ablaze for about 20 minutes this morning before firefighters got the upper hand.
The Food Sharing Association doesn’t yet know the extent of damage. It’s the warehouse which contains all of their product, most of which is boxed and canned.
Thick, white smoke billowed from the building, which is near Honda One on the south side of Topsail Road. Firefighters closed off the road in both directions, but it has since re-opened.
⚠️Traffic Advisory⚠️ All four lanes of Topsail Road are closed off in the area of 1149 Topsail Road, near Honda One, while emergency responders attend to a structure fire. #nltraffic
— Royal Newfoundland Constabulary (@RNC_PoliceNL) January 30, 2019
Platoon Chief Dean Foley says there were no injuries.
Eg Walters, the executive director of the association, says the warehouse contained a significant amount of product which would have been shipped to points across the island.
Walters says they’ll be discussing the matter with their insurance company. He says there was a significant amount of product in the building, and losing it would be a big blow.
Walters says people need food year-round, not just at special times of the year such as Christmas and Easter.
This morning’s fire at the Community Food Sharing Association is devastating news. In response, my office at 689 Topsail Road will be collecting and storing non-perishable food items until a new space can be found.
If you can, please swing by and donate, and RT/share. pic.twitter.com/hSbMVvZQa9
— Seamus O’Regan (@SeamusORegan) January 30, 2019
St. John’s South-Mount Pearl MP Seamus O’Regan is opening up his constituency office for food storage. It’s located at 689 Topsail Road.