Massive Fire at Longview Plastic Plant - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

09/07/03 - Longview

Massive Fire at Longview Plastic Plant

             Around noon today the call came in... A raging fire out of control at Southwest plastics plant on F-M 1845... And an army of firefighters rushed to the scene from 8 different fire departments to battle a blaze.

    "The problem with this fire is that we don't have adequate water to be able to attack the fire and the intensity of the fire" said Longview assistant fire marshal Brian Howell. It was a plastics recycling plant with hundreds of pallets of product on site.

   No one was hurt in the blaze but, as it began to threaten nearby homes firefighters frantically worked to contain it... And employees rushed to get anything they could out of the fires path. When fire crews arrived at the scene the fire was already at an advanced stage plastics were burning at intense heat, they couldn't get enough water on it and the fire was moving quickly... They had to take up defensive positions.

      Ladder trucks with water, and several foam units tried to suppress the intense flames... But as the wind changed, the fire continued to rage... Leaving the business owner only to watch his livelihood burn away.

   "Been tough been tough , 10 years of hard work going up in smoke and no way to get all the records out... Its really tough" said the business owner John Thompson.

   Several firefighters were overcome with heat exhaustion... Finally crews were able to stop the blaze from spreading but that was all... They could only let it burn out. The cause of the fire remains under investigation, and fire marshal's expect that an environmental study will be done to determine whether there is any damage from the toxins given off by the burning plastics.

 Bob hallmark reporting.

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