The Kootenays got its own version of the Big Bang Theory yesterday, as area residents speculated on the cause of a series of explosions.
Speculation as to the cause of the sound was intense on social media, with one commenter describing a bang so loud they thought a car had driven into the side of their home.The Source contacted RDCK fire services, Robson, Ootischenia, Castlegar and Pass Creek Fire Departments, as well as a Southeast Fire centre weather forecaster to rule out thunder and Earthquake Canada to rule out seismic activity), all to no avail, and residents suggested causes ranging from mudslides to sonic booms in an attempt to ascertain the source of the sound, which many said was frightening.
An email message to The Source this morning, from Kalesnikoff CFO Krystle Seed, put all those theories to rest.
“I can help solve the mystery of the blasting noises. One of Kalesnikoff Lumber Company’s contractors has been doing some roadwork in Lower Merry Creek, which included blasting at 10:30 yesterday morning and 7:30 this morning. Apparently the sound is carrying across the river and into the Robson Pass. We apologize for any concern and have put measures in place to avoid future surprises. They will not be doing any further blasting today but will continue their work next week between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.”
Gerald Cordeiro, development supervisor for Kalesnikoff, said in a telephone interview later in the day that the combination of large, hard rock terrain facing Castlegar/Robson/Pass Creek and a low cloud ceiling contributed to the volume and reverberation experienced by local residents.
“We were quite surprised – it was a normal blast, but the noise was much louder.”
He said Kalesnikoff will strive to notify local media (including The Source) in the event of future blasting, but says it’s difficult to provide exact times.
“It depends on the success of the first blast, whether more will have to be conducted.”
He said there will very likely be more blasting next week.