Westview pellet terminal in Prince Rupert. (File photo)

Impact on Westview terminal uncertain after Alberta fire

Pinnacle pellet production offline until March

The extent of the impact on shipment numbers at the Westview Wood Pellet Terminal remains uncertain after a fire in Alberta earlier this month.

On Feb. 11 a fire and explosion damaged the dryer area at Pinnacle Renewable Energy’s wood pellet production facility in Entwistle, Alta.

Pinnacle also owns and ships out of the Westview Wood Pellet Terminal.

According to a release from Friday, temporary suspension of operations is ongoing as one contractor remains in hospital.

Six employees and five contractors have also been treated for minor injuries.

READ MORE: Pinnacle pellets to feed hungry Japanese biomass industry

The release said a decision will be made on when full production at the facility will resume following the outcome of the formal investigation still underway by Alberta Labour Occupational Health and Safety (OHS).

However, the release added that production from dry fibre is expected to resume sometime in March.

READ MORE: Pinnacle pellet terminal on track for operational start later this year

“Over the coming days and weeks, we will work with the Entwistle team, as well as Alberta OHS and the Chief Fire Marshal of Parkland County to ensure a full understanding of the factors that contributed to this event and the course of action required to move forward in a way that reflects our values,” said Leroy Reitsma, president and chief operating officer.

In January, before the Entwistle fire, the Port of Prince Ruport reported the Westview Terminal was already processing fewer shipments this year compared to last.

In January 2018, the terminal recorded 81,286 shipments. In January 2019, the terminal recorded 71,174.


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