Tenants now homeless after blaze

Four separate tenants living above the New Moon restaurant on Third Avenue will be needing somewhere to live, pronto.

Luke Werner

Luke Werner

Luke Werner lived in one of the units above the former New Moon. Lived, now the operative word, since he, like others in the building, have been left homeless following the Saturday evening blaze that  engulfed the entire building.

“Everything’s gone even my wallet and I can’t do anything. I slept on the street last night,” he said.

The 32-year-old crab fisherman has rotated back-and-forth from Red Deer, Alta. for the past 19 years catching seasonal fishing work here in Prince Rupert. For the past two months he has lived above the restaurant on Third Ave. and said he doesn’t know what he’s going to do.

“Around 12:30 a.m. [Saturday] I was passed out on my couch when my door got kicked in by the fire department. Soon as they opened the door the smoke poured in, I thought I was going to pass out. They screamed ‘ your place is burning, your place is burning. Is there anyone else in the house?’. I said, ‘no’ and followed one of the firefighters out of there.”

Werner describes the scenario as happening too fast with no time to grab anything.

“It was a scary feeling. I’ve never been in that situation before but thank God they came. If they didn’t kick in my front door I would have been burnt up. Thank God for the Prince Rupert Fire Department,” Werner said.

Although he agrees everything happens for a reason, Werner says all his work clothes where inside the apartment when the fire happened.

“Now I’m stuck. No clothes, no money. I feel lost,” he said.

Acting emergency services staffer with the city, Calvin Grav, said they are helping people with accommodations for up to 72 hours.