Leaving town alongside the residents and businesses of Fort McMurray, as the fires raged and devoured the city, was an emotional experience for the staff of Western Dry Ice Blasting. Company manager, Pat Schrock, said of the experience, “I honestly never thought we would ever experience having to gather your family and flee your home to survive, not here anyway. There are really no words to describe it. You hear the stories of what people went through to get to safety and it seems so unbelievable.”
Western Dry Ice Blasting set up shop in Fort McMurray in 2013 because Schrock saw a need for dry ice blasting services in the oil plants.
Dry ice blasting is a specialized cleaning method that uses dry ice pellets to deliver a non-abrasive, deep clean. As well as being environmentally friendly, it is a completely dry process that is effective in removing bitumen deposits and residue from both electrical and heavy equipment, and in production areas.
Since starting up in Fort McMurray, Western Dry Ice has become a part of the community, building relationships with oil plant operators and other local business owners.
Western’s company house and shop, as well as a commercial vehicle, were lost in May’s tragic fires. However, luckily, their heavy dry ice blasting equipment was being stored in another facility and survived. With some additional equipment that was shipped from Western’s partner location in Ontario, the Western Dry Ice Blasting crew were able to get back into town quite quickly, albeit without accommodation, to help with the clean up once the fires had been quelled.
Western’s expertise and extensive fire restoration experience are currently being utilized to restore hotels in Fort McMurray. Once clean up of the hotels is complete, the much needed additional accommodation will allow more residents, businesses and visitors to return to Fort McMurray.
Although many businesses were forced out of town by the fires, Western Dry Ice is determined to help restore the city and see it once again become a thriving community. As Schrock explains, “Now we are back and everyone is focused on returning this community back to the great home that we all know. We look forward to our part in this, alongside all our friends and neighbours!”
For more information on how Western can help with the restoration efforts of Fort McMurray, please contact Pat Schrock on(780) 799-1879.