Six days after an ammonia leak at the Fernie Memorial Arena prompted an evacuation order for approximately 55 homes near the arena, the evacuation order has been lifted and residents are able to return home.

“The situation at the arena has stabilized and the experts on scene are now comfortable that there is no longer an ammonia threat at the arena. It is now safe for residents to return home and the on-scene investigation to continue,” says Fire Chief Ted Ruiter. The arena and Community Centre will remain closed to the public.

As the focus now turns to the clean-up process, the Emergency Response Team is meeting this morning and the City will provide more details on this next step in the process this afternoon. “Air quality monitoring will continue and although residents may notice an intermittent ammonia odor near the arena, we want to assure them there are no risks or health hazards,” adds Ruiter.

Specialists from the Provincial Disaster Psychosocial Program remain in Fernie to provide support services to anyone who feels they need assistance to help deal with grief and stress. This free service is available by calling 250-489-9677.

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