'It's devastating': Dozens of racehorses die in fire

More than 40 racehorses were killed when a fire tore through a barn in south-central Ontario, causing the roof and walls to collapse.

See Full Article

The fire began at approximately 11 p.m., at the Classy Lanes Stables Training Centre in Puslinch, Ont. Puslinch is a township located approximately 20 kilometres southeast of Guelph.

Firefighters were called in from several communities in the area, but the fire could not be extinguished before dozens of horses had died.

"It's devastating. These are by and large family members to us," Ben Wallace said in an interview with Newstalk1010 on Tuesday. Wallace is an owner and trainer who lost 17 horses in the fire. Wallace told CTV Toronto that one of his horses that died in the fire was racing star Apprentice Hanover, who is worth more than $1 million.

"There's 44 carcasses laying here," Wallace told Newstalk1010 from the scene of the fire, his voice cracking. He said the barn holds 46 horses, but there were at least two empty stalls at the time, so he wasn't sure exactly how many horses had died.

Wallace said he'd been at the stable at the time, and that the fire had engulfed one of the buildings so quickly that no one was able to get to the horses.

"The smoke was so dense that you couldn't go near it. They probably all suffocated before they perished."

"This is not an old wooden barn, it's a state-of-the-art facility… It's the best place in Canada and houses the best horses in Canada," he said. Classy Lane opened in 2003, and can accommodate as many as 222 horses, according to the stable's website.

The majority of the horses are owned by trainers who race them at southern Ontario racetracks including the Mohawk, Woodbine and Flamboro Downs tracks, Puslinch Fire Chief Steve Goode told reporters.

Goode said the cause of the fire is not yet known, but crews are working with provincial police and the Ontario Fire Marshal to investigate.

"This is a multi-million dollar fire, the highest dollar loss that we have experienced in our township," he said.

He said the building is not structurally sound, so crews will have to take some of the building down before investigating further.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Manitoba to look at connection between youth incarceration and child welfare

    Canada News CTV News
    WINNIPEGOSIS, Man. — Manitoba is taking a hard look at youth justice and its connection to child welfare after a study found more than half of kids incarcerated had also been in care. Justice Minister Cliff Cullen announced Friday that the province will review why youth are bouncing between the two systems without having positive outcomes. Source
  • Court filing: Manafort faces more than 19 years in prison

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- Paul Manafort, the one-time chairman of Donald Trump's presidential campaign, could spend more than 19 years in prison on tax and bank fraud charges, according to court papers filed Friday. Documents filed by special counsel Robert Mueller's office reveal that Manafort faces the lengthiest prison term imposed in the Russia investigation if a federal judge agrees to it. Source
  • 'Everybody suffers too much:' Nigeria to head to the polls

    World News CTV News
    KANO, Nigeria -- As Nigerians prepared to vote for president on Saturday, Sister Meg Odeh looked up from a selection of pineapples laid out at a fume-choked roadside market and considered the fate of her country. Source
  • Nigeria delays election until Feb. 23 over 'challenges'

    World News CTV News
    KANO, Nigeria -- Nigeria's electoral commission delayed the presidential election until Feb. 23, making the announcement a mere five hours before polls were set to open Saturday. It cited unspecified "challenges" amid reports that voting materials had not been delivered to all parts of the country. Source
  • Alberta missionaries stranded by unrest in Haiti to be evacuated by helicopter Saturday

    World News CBC News
    A group of missionaries from Alberta who are stranded in Haiti by violent protests are now scheduled to begin departing from the country early Saturday morning. Working for the group Haiti Arise, the missionaries are stranded at a compound near Grand Goave — about 65 kilometres west of Port-au-Prince, the capital. Source
  • Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual assault: British newspaper

    Canada News CTV News
    LONDON -- A British newspaper says police in London are investigating an allegation of sexual assault made against former British Columbia premier Gordon Campbell. The Daily Telegraph says Scotland Yard is investigating a complaint from a woman who was an employee at the Canadian High Commission when Campbell was high commissioner. Source
  • Amber Alert mobile system working despite glitches, but could be tweaked, experts say

    Canada News CBC News
    Some people received duplicate alerts on their mobile phones, some not until hours after the incident, and some as far away as Manitoba. But despite those glitches, the Amber Alert sent out Thursday to locate a missing 11-year-old Brampton, Ont. Source
  • Sidewalk Labs CEO responds to criticism around tax and transit plans

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- Sidewalk Labs's chief executive officer says it's too "premature" to abandon any ideas it unveiled Thursday for a high-tech Toronto community it hopes to build, despite the concepts being met with fierce criticism. Source
  • Ottawa, provinces commit to addressing abuse in sports

    Canada News CBC News
    Canadian politicians are banding together to address harassment, abuse and discrimination in sports, but details on their plans remain slim. Kirsty Duncan, Canada's Minister of Science and Sport, announced in Red Deer, Alta., on Friday that the federal government, along with each province and territory, has signed a declaration to tackle and prevent harassment, abuse and discrimination in sport. Source
  • Canada's main stock index reaches highest level since Oct. 5

    Canada News CBC News
    Canada's main stock index posted a triple-digit gain Friday after oil hit a three-month high to extend the market's winning streak to six weeks. The S&P/TSX composite index closed up 142.26 points to 15,838.24, after hitting a peak during the day of 15,866.60. Source