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Fire engulfs recently opened Waswanipi Cree Lumber sawmill

January 25, 2024  By CFI Staff

A devastating fire has destroyed the newly opened Cree Lumber sawmill in Waswanipi, Que.

In a Facebook post dated Jan. 22, the company said that on the evening of Jan. 21, the facility “experienced a catastrophic fire. The current situation is being managed by the relevant authorities, fire department, and the EEPF, and we are awaiting further information regarding the cause of the incident. At this time, the site is inaccessible to everyone.”

It added, “The community’s leadership, led by Chief Irene Neeposh, along with the company’s partners, is actively engaged in uniting to confront this unprecedented challenge. Most importantly, we are relieved to report that no injuries have been reported as of the latest update. Our main concern is the well-being of everyone involved.”

The community sawmill opened more than a year ago, as a result of a collaboration between the Cree Nation of Waswanipi, Mishtuk Corporation and Chantiers Chibougamau.


“As we navigate this difficult situation, it is anticipated that the repercussions on the mill will be profound and long-term,” the company’s statement said.

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