Skip to content
Join our Newsletter

Update: Firefighters battle Richmond trestle bridge fire until early morning (Video)

There were traffic delays in the Bridgeport area and the Oak Street Bridge was closed in both directions on Thursday evening.

The fire that sent plumes of black smoke into Richmond's sky on Thursday was finally put out early Friday morning.

An empty loading bay and private dock on River Drive, near the River Rock Casino, caught on fire around 8 p.m. on June 20.

Richmond Fire-Rescue (RFR) battled a large industrial fire with "seven apparatus" the evening before according to Grant Wyenberg, assistant deputy chief of RFR.

Last night, crews were able to extinguish the warehouse portion of the fire but were unable to reach the trestle bridge and requested the help of a fire boat for the area over the Fraser River.

Crews fought the trestle bridge fire until 5 a.m. on June 21.

"We still have a presence on scene as we identify and extinguish hot spots before starting the fire investigation," said Wyenberg.

"The terrain and the materials involved have made for a very challenging fire to extinguish completely."

Wyenberg confirmed there were no reported injuries to fire crews or bystanders, but is advising the public there is an air quality concern east of the fire.

Stefen Kloppenburg, owner of Full Circle Furniture, was working in the parking lot of his business before he spotted the smoke in the sky.

When he saw the raging fire at the uninhabited dock, he called the fire department.

"While I was standing there and on the phone with fire rescue, a transformer exploded and shot like blue sparks and stuff all around," said Kloppenburg.

"There were still people driving down the road like under the flames."

He told the Richmond News that he was frustrated to see people gathering and "spectating and filming" on the narrow road despite the "already raging fire."

"It's just a little crazy because this has to be cleared out so the fire department can come in here and if there's people blocking the road, how's the fire truck going to get through?"

According to Kloppenburg, three to four firetrucks arrived on the scene within 10 minutes of the call.

As a result of the heavy clouds of smoke from the fire, the Oak Street Bridge was closed until early morning.

A decommissioned railroad bridge in the area was also on fire, according to a photo from X user Lucas Gates.

Residents of Richmond could see the plumes as far south as Walter Lee Neighbourhood Park and it was also visible in the Marpole neighbourhood in Vancouver. 

Meanwhile, E-Comm was asking the public to not call 9-1-1 with questions about the large fire in Richmond.

"As we work to assist fire crews on the ground, please do not call 9-1-1 with general questions and follow directions from local authorities," posted E-Comm on social media platform X.

The public can also monitor the air quality near them using the Air Quality Health Index map, according to Metro Vancouver.

Got an opinion on this story or any others in Richmond? Send us a letter or email your thoughts or story tips to [email protected]. To stay updated on Richmond news, sign up for our daily headline newsletter.

Video produced by Alanna Kelly