When eastern New Brunswick was slammed with an ice storm earlier this month, power lines and transformers were damaged severely, leaving approximately 130,000 without power for nearly two weeks in some cases. Communities in the northeastern part of the province rallied together to help their neighbours in need by providing necessities like food and water, firewood and opening emergency shelters to stay warm.
Forest NB members in the affected regions answered the call, providing support where they could.
During the first week after the storm, Chaleur Sawmills donated a truckload of wood chips for heating homes. They also supplied a load of 8-foot hardwood logs, transported by donation from Murphy’s Trucking.
Arbec Forest Products also contributed, sending two truckloads of firewood and a carload of baked goods to the Acadian Peninsula. They also provided interest-free loans to Arbec employees who were affected by the storm.
Fornebu Lumber contributed financial support (along with other businesses) for lunch on Sunday January 29th where more than 1,000 meals were provided. Full financial, logistical and manpower support were provided for lunches on February second and third, serving 600-800 lunches total over the two days.
They also sent three loads of trim block (roughly 70 tonnes), transported by Noel Godbout Transport Ltée to the St-Marie/St Raphael municipal office, the Lamèque municipal office and the Caraquet Industrial park for those without electricity and one load (16 cords) of eight-foot roundwood maple logs.
“Emery Fournier from Allardville was the trucker that took the roundwood to Barryville to get process. Sub Licensee Ridel Firewood Ltd. cut and split in 16’’ with [their] firewood processor (Marc Ridel). Roy Excavation was the trucker that delivered the wood in the dump truck, assistance was given by André Roy and his son Maxime Roy to pile the wood in the truck. Two Fornebu staff assisted in processing the wood and provided meals for the crew. Wood was delivered to St-Marie/St-Raphael. Jean-Marc Cormier (Fornebu Staff) was there also to help with the logistics. Military coordinated the delivery,” said Kevin Jewett, president and CEO of Fornebu Lumber.
Fornebu also donated one load of dry softwood, hauled by AMF Contracting.
“We were pretty proud to be able to help the people around the area,” said Michael Godin, general manager of Fornebu Lumber. “To be a big company like us and be able to help in a very bad situation like that is a pretty good thing, we are very proud to help the people of the Acadian peninsula.”
AV Group and one of their large cutting contractors, AMF, also contributed to the relief effort. AMF sent their generator to the Saint-Isidore fire station to provide a shelter for people to stay warm and have a cup of coffee. They also provided a truck for transporting wood.
AV Cell in Atholville held a fundraiser and contributed relief funds totaling twenty-five hundred dollars. An AV Cell employee delivered food to a shelter in Tracadie.
Groupe Savoie donated approximately twenty thousand dollars of retail value of their home heating products, like wood pellets, brickets and fire logs, to homes affected in the Acadian Peninsula including the cost of transportation.
“As an association Forest NB values community prosperity and sustainable renewal of our forests but nothing is more important than that positive relationship with the communities where we live and work,” said Mike Legere, executive director with the forest industry organization. “We’re not just mills and equipment but fellow New Brunswickers, your neighbours, your family and friends. When there’s a need we step up.”