Firefighter victim in Morrisburg Evonik explosion; O.P.P. rally to support his recovery

In this photo from SD&G O.P.P., Acting Sgt. Gerry Holiday, Acting Insp. Simon Hardy and Acting Sgt. Mark Evans get ready to put some money in the boot to help a fellow first responder -- a South Stormont volunteer firefighter. Firefighter Blake was severely burned in an explosion at a Morrisburg oil additives plant. (SD&G O.P.P. via Newswatch Group)

MORRISBURG – First responders are rallying around a South Stormont firefighter hurt in a workplace fire and explosion in Morrisburg.

Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry O.P.P. members have started a boot drive for the man, known only as firefighter “Blake,” who was hurt in the accident Dec. 4 at the Evonik plant on County Road 2.

“Boot the burns. From our hearts to yours. Get well soon. SD&G O.P.P.,” reads a heart shaped message on a firefighter’s boot, the SD&G O.P.P. tweeted Wednesday afternoon.

“Blake,” 26, is currently in a Toronto hospital being treated for severe burns.

The explosion and fire, which happened around 12:30 a.m. Friday (Dec. 4) is currently under investigation by the Ministry of Labour.

“Our company cares deeply about our people and their safety, and our first concern right now is with our employee and their family,” Site Manager Owen Caves said in a statement.

Evonik, which has a staff of 30, says it’s cooperating with authorities.