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Maple Ridge officials praise emergency responders for handling of devastating fire

‘The community has already come together and we will continue to come together’: Coun. Yousef
A fire in the early morning hours of June 10 has evacuated hundreds of Maple Ridge residents. (Brandon Tucker/The News)

As the City of Maple Ridge are shaken by the loss of dozens of homes in the fire early Saturday morning, some city officials are praising the work of emergency responders and saying that what happened could have been a lot worse if everything had gone just a little bit different.

READ MORE: Downtown Maple Ridge fire burns new condo development to the ground

Councillor Ahmed Yousef said that there was a great deal of teamwork that went into the fire response.

“We were the recipients of support from both Mission and Pitt Meadows firefighters, and the RCMP were helping out a lot too,” said Yousef.

Maple Ridge Mayor Dan Ruimy said he saw this coordinated effort firsthand and was blown away by it all.

“We were there until four in the morning and what we saw was a well-executed emergency operation,” said Ruimy.

“Everybody played a role, and the feedback I’m hearing is that folks were communicated with very well the entire time and told where to go and what to do. Everything went the way it should have gone.”

Coun. Yousef said that the weather was also very favourable and helped prevent the incident from being even more tragic.

“The rain was truly a blessing and kept a lot of other fires from starting from the embers and stuff,” said Yousef.

Yousef also said that the response from the community has been incredible to see.

“People have been offering meals, shelter, and everything in between,” he said. “The community has already come together and we will continue to come together.”

Some of the efforts currently available to those affected by the fire are being provided at Greg Moore Youth Centre, where Red Cross and emergency responders are providing temporary accommodations, food, and clothing.

“Greg Moore will be open until 2 p.m., but will likely be extended,” explained Mayor Ruimy.

“The province is aware of what’s going on, but figuring out how the city and the province play into all of this will be for another day.”

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