Man dies in fire at Calgary Alpha House
Published Saturday, March 7, 2015 11:04AM MST Last Updated Sunday, March 8, 2015 11:27AM MDT
A fire at a refuge for people with alcohol and drug dependencies in the city’s southeast has claimed the life of a man and displaced dozens of residents.
Emergency crews were called to Calgary Alpha House at 203 15 Avenue SE at about 12:15 a.m. Saturday for a fire that is believed to have started in a bathroom.
“It was an isolated incident. When we arrived there was one male in his early 30s that was in critical condition, he had 98 percent second to third degree burns to himself and was rushed to Foothills Hospital,” said Naomi Nania with Calgary EMS.
Dozens of people were evacuated from the building and transit provided buses to keep people warm while crews worked to find other social agencies to take them in.
The sprinkler system was triggered by the blaze and the facility suffered significant water damage.
The Mustard Seed and Calgary Drop-In Centre have taken in about 160 people who were displaced by the fire.
“Buses came about 1:30 this morning to bring clients to our facility. As we have found out that it could be several days that Alpha House is with us just based on considerable water damage that was done because of the fire,” said Debbie Newman, Executive Director of the Calgary Drop-in Centre.
Alpha House staff members are helping out at the Drop-in to support the staff there.
“Everyone stepped up. The kitchen is making more meals. We’ve asked for additional resources from the public if they’re able to provide us with food and clothing and other agencies have also supported us in looking at how they can provide us with additional resources,” said Newman.
Police confirm that a man died in the fire.
There is no word yet on the man’s identity or the cause of the fire.
Officials from Alpha House say the damage from the fire will be covered by insurance and that they are waiting to assess what if any additional support will be needed.