Five employees at Tamihi Logging have had to be laid off after a massive arson destroyed several pieces of heavy duty equipment.
RCMP say they are thoroughly investigating the incident, which happened about 11.5 km up the Mount Woodside Forest Service Road earlier this month. The arson was reported by the company when they found their equipment destroyed on the morning of July 3. The incident could have happened anytime between then, and June 28 at 3 p.m.
Tamihi owner Brian Dorman said it’s going to take some time to recoup from the damage, which he estimates to be about $900,000.
Some of the equipment is irreplaceable, Dorman said, because it’s not even made anymore. Because of the machinery’s size, it will have to be deconstructed to be removed from the site.
A 1997 Volvo A25-C rock truck (dump truck), a 2004 John Deere 2554 Excavator, and a Finning M32 Rock Dill destroyed by fire.
“New replacement value is a $1.5 million,” Dorman said.
This isn’t the first time the company has been hit by vandals. Dorman said it’s a “chronic problem” and they’re determined to find out who is behind it.
They previously offered a $5,000 reward for other damages, but have now increased that reward to $20,000.
“They’re going to put us out of business otherwise,” Dorman said. “This is really serious. I’ve had to lay off five guys for the short term. Those are five people that aren’t able to feed their families.”
RCMP confirm they are treating the case very seriously.
“At this point, this investigation is being investigated as an arson,” said Corporal Tammy Hollingsworth. “Tamihi Logging Company has suffered a significant loss and would like the person or persons responsible to come forward and be held accountable.”
Anyone with information regarding this intentional destruction of equipment is asked to call the Agassiz RCMP at 604-796-2211 or leave an anonymous tip to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).