Despite overnight temperatures dipping to a frigid -26 degrees Wednesday overnight, the Beauharnois fire department rallied to extinguish a fire at an apartment complex.

The flames erupted around 2 a.m. in the building, located on Route 132 in the Maple Grove sector. Because of the cold, firefighters switched at intervals so they could warm up back at the fire station. 

Fire chief Maurice Marleau said firefighting equipment, including trucks and ladders, kept freezing, delaying their efforts. 

Witnesses to the blaze said extinguishing it took most of the night. While tending to the building on Route 132, firefighters were also called to another fire in the industrial sector of Beauharnois, next to the former Rio Tinto Alcan factory.

The building tenants were evacuated and relocated, but no one was injured. 

Firefighters from 17 neighbouring municipalities were dispatched to help fight both fires, something that Beauharnois Mayor Bruno Tremblay said was unprecedented. 

For the moment, the cause of the fire is still unknown.