IA Power Plant Fire: Equipment Failure

Tuesday, September 6, 2016 @ 04:09 PM gHale


Equipment failure was the cause of a fire at the Muscatine Power and Water power plant in Muscatine, IA, Tuesday afternoon.

The 12:35 p.m. equipment failure at the power plant caused lubricant to leak onto hot pipes, causing a fire, according to a press release from Brandy Olsen, director of legal and regulatory services at Muscatine Power and Water.

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The Muscatine Fire Department got the call to the power plant at 1:37 p.m., and the fire was under control by 3:13 p.m., said Mike Hartman, assistant chief and fire marshal with the Muscatine Fire Department.

When firefighters arrived on scene, they found light to moderate smoke throughout the building. The fire ended up contained, but still smoldering, according to Hartman.

Because water could have caused further damage, Hartman said three different types of fire extinguishers ended up used.

“The trick with that was utilization of fire extinguishers, and getting the equipment cooled,” he said.

Olsen said no employees suffered an injury, however, one did complain of heat exhaustion.

The worker ended up treated at the scene and recovered quickly, Hartman said.

Unit Nine, the building in which the fire occurred, will be offline for several days for repairs, although Olsen said customers will not experience any decline in services.

Cause of the fire is under investigation, and the Muscatine Fire Department is working with Muscatine Power and Water staff to assess options to decrease or eliminate the possibility of any further fires.