No injuries in silo fire at lumber company

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BLACK RIVER FALLS, Wis. (BLACK RIVER FALLS FIRE DEPARTMENT NEWS RELEASE) - At 04:26 on December 31, 2012 the Black River Falls Fire Department was paged by the Jackson County Emergency Dispatch Center (EDC) for a silo fire at 518 Winnebago Ave. the Hart Tie and Lumber Company, in the City of Black River Falls.

Hart Tie & Lumber Company is a wood processing (millwork) company.

Upon arrival the department observed smoke coming from the bottom of the metal bin that contained saw dust – wood shavings. An employee advised that when he found the fire flames were coming from the area and used fire extinguishers to knock down the fire. The fire was in the area where an auger takes the saw dust – wood shaving’s matter from the bottom of the bin and feeds it into a boiler which supplies heat to the large onsite wood drying kilns.

The power to the auger was disconnected and the fire was extinguished. The department thermal imaging camera did not show any hot spots in the bin at this time. There was concern that the fire may have extended into the saw dust –wood shaving within the metal and company employees were going to keep a watch.

The department cleared from the scene at 05:16.

At 07:37 the department was paged to return to the same address. The EDC was reporting that flames were coming out the top of the metal bin.

Upon arrival flames were found to be coming out of the metal bin. Company employees moved a portable auger away from the bin which allowed the department to get its aerial truck (Engine 3) in position near the bin. The aerial’s unmanned master stream was then directed into opening at the top of the bin. The department pumped 59,500 gallons of water into the bin to extinguish the fire.

At this time a damage estimate is not known.

There were no reported injuries.

The department was on scene for just over three (3) hours.

The department was assisted by the Black River Falls Police Department and Black River Falls Street Department with traffic control and direction as Winnebago Ave was closed so that the department could lay a supply line from a fire hydrant to Engine 3.

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