On January 19, 2018 at approximately 3 p.m., the A’nowara’ko:wa Arena suffered major damage from what is being deemed as a ‘Suspicious Fire’ by the Ontario Fire Marshall’s office and the Akwesasne Mohawk Police Service (AMPS). The investigation is still under way, where recently AMPS has issued a memorandum and stated that a ‘Person of Interest’ has been identified.
The Mohawk Council of Akwesasne’s Department of Technical Services (DTS), in coordination with MCA’s insurance adjustor, and the contracted clean-up specialist Service Master, has been in clean-up and restoration mode since February 6, 2018. The MCA insurance adjustor is working closely with the contractor to ensure all damaged equipment, rooms and hardware are repaired, replaced, sanitized and cleaned effectively.
DTS is optimistic that the re-opening of the arena facility will be possible the week of April 2, 2018. To date, we have hired four local workers to assist in the clean- up and service needs for the roof structure and ceiling spaces. In short, every square inch of the facility that was exposed to the smoke and soot damage is being cleaned and sanitized.
The room that sustained the major damage has been stripped, cleaned and has recently been painted with a sealer and deodorizer system. The insurance adjuster and MCA staff agree the clean- up is satisfactory and reconstruction will commence this week.
Clean-up of the ceiling space and rafters is near 75% complete and as systems are removed and cleaned, they have been put back in place in order to keep the project on track. The majority of the storage rooms have been cleaned, and Service Master will be working on the office environments soon, as all HVAC equipment and duct work had to be cleaned also. The crews had to remove all of the duct work in the room that had the fire as well as the adjoining room due to the heavy smoke damage. That system will be replaced in the coming weeks.
The Mohawk Council of Akwesasne is asking for information from community members to help identify whom may have done this to ‘your’ facility. This event has caused serious damage, and we are grateful no one was hurt or injured in this event. Unfortunately, it has also caused the management of the facility to have to take more action towards monitoring occupancy and security of the facility.
If you have any information regarding the suspicious fire, please contact the Akwesasne Mohawk Police at 613-575-2000.
The A’nowara’ko:wa Arena staff and DTS thank the community for their patience during this clean-up and look forward to announcing the re-opening date for the spring season.