NHL hockey teams helps Fernie recover from ice rink tragedy

Fernie Memorial Arena, home of the Jr.B hockey team the Fernie Ghostriders, is shown in Fernie , B.C. on Wednesday, Oct.18, 2017. Three people who died after a suspected ammonia leak were doing maintenance work on ice-making equipment at an arena in southeastern British Columbia, says the city’s mayor. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Lauren Krugel

FERNIE (CP) — Residents of a British Columbia city could soon be back on home ice, thanks to the NHL’s Calgary Flames.

The hockey team’s charitable arm, the Calgary Flames Foundation, has donated an outdoor skating rink to Fernie while the city awaits the reopening of its arena following an ammonia leak on Oct. 17 that left three men dead.

Organizer Chuck Shoesmith of the Fernie Lions Club says the donation comes with a regulation-sized set of boards.

He estimates the total value of the gift is $60,000.

A group of volunteers has stepped forward to build the pad for the rink and it’s hope work will be completed in December, although Shoesmith says when the ice is ready will depend on the weather.

Two men from Fernie and another from the Calgary area died in the ammonia leak at the Fernie Memorial Arena as they were working on the rink’s refrigeration system.

The arena remains closed because several investigations are underway.

The city posted a notice online earlier this month saying there’s no word when its only indoor rink will reopen.

Shoesmith says residents are grateful neighbouring communities in the Elk Valley have offered ice time to local teams but admits Fernie residents miss their own facility.

“The community is kind of feeling lost and helpless,” he says.

Fernie councillors approved the plan and site for the outdoor rink on Monday.

Shoesmith says work is already underway at the location several blocks south of Memorial Arena.

“The boards are from the Calgary Flames. They have their logo on them,” he says.

“It’s quite generous of the Calgary Flames.”

Just Posted

Bus crash survivor petitions Justin Trudeau to fix road where classmates died

UVic student’s petition well over halfway to 5k signature goal

Expect rain in normal Vancouver Island intervals, but bigger buckets

Weather Network predicts a typical amount of rainy days this fall on Vancouver Island

Rain raises water levels in Cowichan Lake

Possibility that pumps could be shut down soon

Central Saanich strawberry farmer reports bumper crop

Strawberry season could last well into October

Victoria author nominated for prestigious Scotiabank Giller Prize

Steven Price’s book, Lampedusa, is a historical fiction novel about an an Italian author

Shambhala named best music festival in North America

Shambhala Music Festival is held at the Salmo River Ranch in B.C.

B.C. MLA calls on province to restrict vaping as first related illness appears in Canada

Todd Stone, Liberal MLA for Kamloops-South Thompson, introduced an anti-vaping bill in April

Chilliwack woman wins right to medically assisted death after three-year court battle

Julia Lamb has been the lead plaintiff in a legal battle to ease restrictions on Canada’s assisted dying laws

Man faces 11 charges after accidentally discharging bear spray around Victoria cops

Drugs, weapons found in wake of unintended downtown discharge

Break out the tiki torches: Open fires allowed again in B.C.’s coastal region

All open fires allowed effective at noon on Sept. 18

Ogden Point officially rebranded as The Breakwater District

New signage and logos accompany plans for Victoria port area’s future

NDP, Liberals promise more spending, while Tories promise spending cuts

Making life more affordable for Canadians a focus in the 2019 election

UPDATE: Police probe third threat against a Kamloops high school in eight days

Police have not released any further details into what the threat includes

B.C. Interior caribou protection area big enough, minister says

Proposals sparked protest in Kootenays, Williams Lake region

Most Read