MONROE (WKOW) -- There doesn't seem to be any damage to an ethanol plant in Monroe after firefighters were called there early Tuesday morning.
Badger State Ethanol LLC General Manager Erik Huschitt says they will evaluate the duct work where the problem was, but they don't think there are any issues with it. The plant had just started a routine maintenance shutdown and Huschitt doesn't expect production to be delayed any longer than normal. The plant will likely start making ethanol again by late Thursday.
Huschitt says they aren't sure how the fire started, but assume it might be residuals in the duct work, which is like a dryer.
Badger State Ethanol has 50 employees. There were some on duty at the time, but no one was hurt. ******** MONROE (WKOW) -- Six hours later, firefighters are still on the scene of an ethanol plant in Monroe.
More than a dozen fire departments were called to Badger State Ethanol early Tuesday morning, and they were expected to stay on scene until at least mid-morning. Monroe Police Chief Fred Kelley tells 27 News the plant was in the middle of a routine shutdown, so it was not producing ethanol at the time. Third shift workers were present when the fire started, but none were injured.
Chief Kelley says by 5:30 a.m., the plant was letting trucks bring corn in and take ethanol out, so there are some operations still happening. Chief Kelley says they think the fire started in the ductwork, possibly from corn dust. "They don't know how yet. They've had experience with that here before and it took from my understanding 10 hours for them to clean the duct."
******** MONROE (WKOW) -- Multiple agencies are on the scene of a fire at a Monroe ethanol plant.
Crews were called to Badger State Ethanol at 820 W. 17th St. just before 3:00 a.m. Tuesday. The Monroe Police Chief, Fred Kelley, says there are more than a dozen fire departments on the scene. Chief Kelley says the fire started in the ducts of the building, most likely because of corn dust from the plant. He says there are no visible flames, but there is smoke throughout.
Chief Kelley says there were 3rd shift workers at the plant at the time, but there are no reports of any injuries. Kelley says fire crews expect to be on the scene for several more hours.
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