Del Monte Plant Safe after Equipment Fire

Thursday, March 19, 2015 @ 03:03 PM gHale


A fire that started in a piece of equipment that burns off vapor from a spray booth at the Silgan Containers plant at the Del Monte Foods facility in Plover, WI, drew a massive response Tuesday, but caused no injuries or significant structure damage.

Firefighters got the call to the fire at 4:15 p.m. and immediately requested aid from other fire departments right after arriving at the facility, said Plover Fire Chief Mark Deaver.

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“We arrived on scene and were met by heavy smoke showing from the building,” Deaver said.

The facility is a processing plant that produces green beans, wax beans, Italian beans, potatoes, beets and carrots, according to the company’s website. It has been in operation since 1966.

Employees ended up safely evacuated from the facility without incident, Deaver said. He did not say how many people work at the facility and Del Monte officials were not immediately available for comment.

The fire started in a piece of equipment in the plant that burns off vapor from a spray booth, which was billowing smoke when firefighters arrived, said Plover Deputy Fire Chief Ken Voss.

Ducts attached to the piece of equipment suffered damage, but the rest of the structure appeared intact, Voss said.

The exact cause of the fire remains under investigation. Firefighters from at least 11 fire departments responded to the blaze, Voss said.

The massive response was largely due to the need for additional manpower to cover the large area inside the facility, Voss said.

“We had to deal with fatigue and heavy smoke conditions,” he said. “We had to keep rotating our crews.”

The fire was out by 7:15 p.m., after firefighters worked to keep the flames from spreading through the ventilation system, Voss said.



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