Fire at IL Food Maker Forces Evac

Tuesday, August 8, 2017 @ 06:08 PM gHale


After evacuating the fire at Kettle Foods, workers wait for the all clear before returning.

A fire at a food manufacturer forced workers to evacuate at Kettle Foods in Beloit, IL, Saturday.

Firefighters from several Rock County departments ended up called to back up city of Beloit firefighters.

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Everyone at the facility evacuated safely, said plant safety manager Jeff Newcomb.

The call for backup from Clinton, Edgerton, Footville, Janesville, Orfordville and Turtle departments, and one from Rockton, Illinois, went out at 2:36 p.m.

Kettle Foods on Beloit’s southeast side.

Beloit Deputy Chief Joe Murray said Kettle has systems — one that deluges vats with water if a fire breaks out and one that ejects smoke — that helped limit damage and made firefighters’ jobs easier.

The cause of the fire was product in a vat catching fire, Murray said. No damage estimate was immediately available.

This isn’t the first fire at the Beloit facility as there was a structure fire in November 2015 at the Kettle Foods caused by one of the factory’s vats.

Kettle Foods, Inc. is an international manufacturer of potato chips, tortilla chips, and nut butters based in Salem, Oregon.



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