Whitehorse Daily Star

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Photo by Vince Fedoroff

DEVASTATION IN RIVERDALE – Three months ago this coming Wednesday, the home that used to occupy this Bates Crescent lot was reduced to rubble. One man died and another was critically injured.

Officials remain tightlipped on explosion’s cause

Officials still aren’t saying much about the state of the investigation into an explosion that killed a man and levelled a house in Riverdale in November 2023.

By T.S. Giilck on February 12, 2024

Officials still aren’t saying much about the state of the investigation into an explosion that killed a man and levelled a house in Riverdale in November 2023.

A home on Bates Crescent exploded early the morning of Nov. 14.

This morning, both the Fire Marshal’s Office and the Yukon Coroner’s Service were contacted by the Star.

Both organizations proved to be exceptionally tight-lipped.

Coroner Heather Jones said in an email, “This remains a criminal act investigation; as such, the lead is the RCMP.”

Chris Green of the Fire Marshal’s Office told the Star he is waiting on the results of some tests before commenting further.

Other than that, his investigation is closed.

Until those test results come in, there will be no more information on the incident released to the public, Greene said.

He referred all other questions to the RCMP. They were also contacted by the Star, but had little to say on the investigation.

“This matter is still under investigation. The Yukon RCMP will provide further information if charges were laid or when the investigation is concluded,” they said in a brief message.

Rumours, however, continue to swirl in the community about the situation.

Speculation is the only thing left at this point for a community that continues to wonder what sparked the blast.

It happened at about 5:30 a.m., and neighbours mistakenly thought it was an earthquake.

Power was knocked out to about 40 homes by what an ATCO Electric Yukon spokesperson said was “flying debris.”

Mayor Laura Cabott said a dozen homes were damaged, some badly, and called it “devastating and a shock to the community.”

Veteran Whitehorse lawyer Tim Preston’s home, the site of the explosion, was completely levelled. Preston, the only occupant at the time, was hospitalized with critical injuries.

Next-door neighbour David Gould was killed.

Comments (2)

Up 29 Down 29

Groucho d'North on Feb 13, 2024 at 9:27 am

Looks like a bad case of CYA, butt whose? Perhaps focus on the mechanics of what caused the explosion rather than who is responsible? That part will be covered by the insurance companies.

Up 40 Down 39

Barbara on Feb 12, 2024 at 3:42 pm

The complete silence of the RCMP is simply not acceptable on this one.

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