Dust fire breaks out at card­board plant

The Covington News - - Local news - By Michelle Kim

A fire broke out in the dust fil­tra­tion sys­tem at the Al­covy Road plant of Smur­fit-Stone, a maker of card­board prod­ucts, and was quickly put out by the sprin­kler sys­tem Mon­day.

The Cov­ing­ton Fire Depart­ment re­ceived the call about 3 p.m. Mon­day for a fire alarm, which was changed to a struc­ture fire call af­ter plant per­son­nel checked out the source of the au­to­matic alarm.

When fire­fight­ers ar­rived on the scene, they saw smoke ris­ing from the dust fil­tra­tion sys­tem, housed in the back of the plant, said CFD Deputy Chief David Gunter.

Con­trac­tors had worked on the sys­tem ear­lier Mon­day, ac­cord­ing to Gunter.

“Af­ter they re­paired all the re­pairs, they left and the fire broke out,” he said.

The sprin­kler sys­tem was au­to­mat­i­cally ac­ti­vated and a call sent out to dis­patch­ers. The plant, which em­ploys less than 100 peo­ple, was evac­u­ated.

The fil­tra­tion sys­tem had been moved to the out­side of the build­ing about eight years ago to help pre­vent fire in­ci­dents and this was the first dust-re­lated fire since the move, said CFD As­sis­tant Fire Mar­shal Tony Smith.

Shortly be­fore the call from Smur­fit-Stone, CFD units had also put out a small grass­fire next door at Pac­tiv, which had started due to util­ity is­sues, said Smith.

Cov­ing­ton Fire Depart­ment Deputy Fire Chief David Gunter in­spects the en­trance to the fil­tra­tion sys­tem at the Smur­fitS­tone plant where dust from card­board prod­ucts caught on fire Mon­day and was put out by the sprin­kler sys­tem.

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