Digby men in Ottawa hotel fire

Jeanne Whitehead/Digby
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Two Digby men were among the four people hospitalized as a result of a New Year’s Day fire at the Radisson Hotel, Ottawa.

Tim Bates and Dan Doucette, both of Digby, are now home, but Bates is still suffering from breathing and vision problems, the result of smoke inhalation.

The two men had traveled to Ottawa Dec. 26 to attend the World Junior’s Hockey tournament.

On New Year’s Day, around 7:50 a.m. the fire alarm in their hotel sounded. Bates said there were a number of children also in town for a minor hockey tournament and at first he thought perhaps one of the youngsters had sounded the alarm. But when he opened the door of his hotel room, the hallway was filled with smoke and the men began their escape.

Bates said he was very disoriented by the smoke. The two, who were on the second floor of the hotel where the fire was set, made their way to the ground floor via the stairwell.

Both men were hospitalized and treated for smoke inhalation.

Doucette was released from the hospital the same day but Bates remained there for four days and required oxygen prior to boarding the plane, Jan. 5, for Halifax. He continues to receive medical treatment.

The Canadian Press reports that a 25 year-old woman from Gatineau, Que. has been charged with setting the fire. Damage was estimated at $1 million.

Organizations: Ottawa hotel, World Junior, Halifax Canadian Press

Geographic location: Ottawa, Gatineau

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