Another fire at the White Birch paper mill

Another fire at the White Birch paper mill

Quebec City (Quebec) 21 January 2015 – Things are getting a bit worrisome at Quebec City’s oldest and only remaining paper mill concerning five fires that have occurred in the last 6 months in the buildings which make up the mill’s operations.

There was a first fire in a warehouse on July 24 from a soldering accident, another on November 28 from an equipment malfunction, another on December 11 from unknown sources, another on January 5 of this year from a vapor discharge and a last one just this week on January 18 from a still unknown cause.

The workers are becoming a bit worried about the quality of the maintenance in the mill and claim that no cleaning or changes have been made since the mill reopened in 2013 after being shut down in 2012 for eight months.

Upon the reopening, the owners of the mill said they would spend $45 million dollars to refurbish and modernize the buildings, none of which has taken place. The government said they would even lend $35 million to help out but, so far nothing has transpired.

According to the union head for the paper-workers, the mill has reduced its personnel by a third and no longer maintains its equipment as they should.

The workers consider the recent fires as a bit scary and wonder if it is still safe to work in certain areas.

In recent months the mill and its employees have been bargaining for a new pension deal, which has overshadowed a lot of the updates that the owners were supposed to implement.

As for the fires and the general upkeep of the installations, the owners of the mill have not returned any calls from media outlets.

The mill is owned by a father and son team from the US who have previously been caught up in fraud charges in their country.

The mill has had several owners over the past years and has changed its name from Anglo-Pulp, to Stadacona, to White Birch.

Most of its paper and cardboard products go to the USA.

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