Canadian Firefighter Magazine

One person displaced by Wotstak First Nation fire

By Jim Dumville, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, River Valley Sun   

News fire fire department New Brunswick

Mar. 14, 2024, Woodstock, N.B. – One person was displaced by a fire that destroyed a house on Eagle’s Nest Drive in Wotstak First (Woodstock) Nation on Friday morning, March 8.

While the single-family dwelling remained standing after the Woodstock Fire Department subdued the blaze, Fire Chief Harold McLellan described the home as “destroyed.”

McLellan said the home’s occupant had already left the house before a neighbour spotted the fire and called it in.

He said an investigator from the Fire Marshal’s Office visited the fire scene on Friday, but they still have not positively determined a cause. He said they don’t consider the fire as suspicious.


McLellan said his firefighters received some extra support when a small group of firefighters heading to a fire training session in the Woodstock area noticed the smoke as they drove past Wotstak First Nation. He said the firefighters attended the scene to help fight the fire.

Ambulance N.B., the RCMP and N.B. Power also joined the firefighters at the fire scene. McLellan said no one was hurt.

The destroyed house sits secluded behind a row of cedar trees along the long residential street on Wotstak First Nation.

McLellan said the Friday morning fire and a response to a minor accident on Monday, March 11, on Route 165 near Wotstack First Nation are the latest in his department’s busy year to date.

He said the calls pushed the Woodstock Fire Department responses to over 60 in 2024. He said it is significantly higher than the 46 calls the department had over the same period in 2023.

McLellan hopes the call volume slows in the future, but he expressed concern that the lack of snow in the area this winter could increase grass or brush fires this spring.

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