We woke up this morning to the news that several aging buildings in downtown Moose Jaw caught fire last night and that the buildings are pretty much destroyed. Several businesses and upstairs apartments are gone; peoples' homes and livelihoods ruined. Fortunately it appears that no one was killed nor injured and that is always the best blessing during such events. We can only hope that everyone had proper insurance. I can't imagine such losses.
Our personal concern is for friends who have knocked themselves setting up a small business in the next building to the ones that burned down. They have spent thousands of dollars renovating their own living space above the store. While I am very grateful that it appears their building was not one of those that caught fire, I can tell from looking at the photos of the fire fighting efforts that their building is likely awash with water and the ensuing damage. Their building is rather elderly as well and may not have fully withstood the water pressure from thousands of gallons being sprayed from fire hoses all over the block. Even if they are all right, it will still be several days before the street in front of their shop is going to be open for pedestrian and motor traffic. They will lose a good deal of money in sales until it is. Their stock would be easily ruined by water, so we hope and pray this will not set them back too badly.
Moose Jaw has experienced several devastating fires downtown in the past few years. The last one of this magnitude was in the dead of winter and the ice damage from the freezing up of all that water from fire fighting caused nearly as much grief as the fire itself. Thankfully there will be less of that this time with the much warmer temperatures of the oncoming spring.