Details of a community meeting in Wheatley next week to get an update on the 2021 explosion have been released.
The Municipality of Chatham-Kent said the meeting to update the residents about the findings of the engineering investigations into the Wheatley blast will be held on Wednesday March 1, 2023 at 6 p.m. at the Talbot Trail Golf Course located at 790 Talbot Trail in Wheatley.
Downtown Wheatley exploded on August 21, 2021 when Methane Hydrogen Sulfide gas (H2S) came up through basement drains at 15 Erie Street North, the old Pogue Pub.
In a statement released on Friday afternoon, municipal officials noted municipal staff and provincial representatives will be in attendance to provide an update and answer questions from residents.
Earlier this month, the municipality also said staff would be reaching out to the property owners in the downtown Wheatley evacuation zone about the possibility of buying their properties. The municipality said 11 properties are within the current Wheatley evacuation zone and purchasing the properties would make it easier to implement safety systems if they were publicly owned. Public ownership will also allow for community input into the vision of the area in the future, according to the municipality.
“It is hoped that these steps may help in the re-building and healing process for the community,” the municipality wrote in a news release on February 8, 2023.
The municipality said information from the March 1, 2023 update meeting will be posted on the Wheatley Update page on Let’s Talk Chatham-Kent found at https://www.letstalkchatham-kent.ca/wheatley-updates.
No final decisions have been made by the municipality about whether to purchase any properties and a staff report will be coming before Council at a later date to determine the next steps.