Employees of a torched manufacturing business are left with burning questions after investigators determined last week’s multimillion-dollar inferno was deliberately set.
Someone set the manufacturing business, Energy Saving Systems, ablaze through the night on Jan. 26, and CEO Leon Prevost said he hasn’t the first clue who’s responsible.
“I have no theories and am just dumbfounded as to why someone would do this,” he said. “We have security, we had our gates locked and we thought we were doing everything right. Obviously, someone found a way to get in that we didn’t think about.”
Investigators have not yet pinpointed a cause of the $4-million blaze in the warehouse at 126 Avenue and 124 Street, or released information on any possible suspects.
“Investigators asked me if I have disgruntled employees — many have been working here for over five years, and some that have left still come over for lunch.”
Office staff are set to go back to work today. Operations will resume, as soon as a new site is chosen for the family-run business. Prevost credits his “remarkable” staff for picking up the pieces so quickly.
He added hopes of starting over would have gone up in smoke, were it not for items pulled from the inferno by firefighters.
“It’s not easy, but when the big guy upstairs gives you lemons, you make lemonade,” he said. “We owe so much to the crews and our staff.”
In addition to the Energy Saving Systems blaze, Edmonton saw a handful of arsons in January.
On Jan. 10, Molotov cocktails were hurled at the home of a former Syncrude oil executive. The home, located in an upscale Bearspaw cul-de-sac, was destroyed. Damages were estimated at $850,000.
On Jan. 26, a fire was deliberately set in the front of a home at 128 Street and 121 Avenue.
All are under investigation by the Edmonton Police Services arson unit.