Fire at Jackson Park destroys Bright LIghts Windsor attraction


An inspector has been called to the scene following a fire at Bright Lights Windsor.

Crews from three stations at Windsor Fire and Rescue Services arrived at Jackson Park around 4:30 p.m. Sunday for a hay fire in what was suppose to be a hay maze for children at the popular winter attraction that opens in three-weeks. 

The city's Public Works department brought in a front-end loader to move the straw around so crews could attack the flames and battle hot spots.

A large plume of grey smoke was visible for several hours as crews attacked the fire. 

District Chief Jack Bailey tells AM 800 news, a number of units were called to the scene, "There was a large straw fire, bales of straw that were on fire.  The first first arriving crew had to call in two additional units, we had to call in a third unit and as of right now, they have the front end loader moving the straw around as crews are hitting hot spots."

Bailey adds the straw created a thick plume of smoke, "Lots of fire right now, a lot of hot spots", he said. "We had the front end loader moving straw around so we could get to hot spots, two lines going on the fire.  Quite a large area, so we're going to be here into the night. " Bailed noted that some of the installations that were part of the festival were damaged, "There was some damage to the Bright Lights on the west side of the pile, but everything is contained and there's no risk to the public." 

The city's Commissioner of Community Services Ray Mensour tells AM 800 news, the investigation continues. "We still don't know any details on how it started but it's contained luckily and hopefully we'll have more information in the coming days",  adding the new hay maze event won't be available. "This area was going to be a maze, a hay maze, that we were going to have as part of the Bright Lights for this upcoming year and again we don't know how it started because this area is contained. Once we get more information, we'll be able to determine next steps but unfortunately this year we won't be able to have the hay maze for this year's event."

Mensour says it's unknown if the opening of the event will be delayed, "We're going to give the fire department, they're saying a few days, to contain all of this. Once we get a better assessment we'll have to determine the next steps as we planned to open Bright Lights in early December."

Mensour says the opening of Bright Lights Windsor shouldn't be delayed but that information won't be known until the investigation has concluded.