Texas Fertilizer Plant Completely Destroyed by Huge Fire

An American fertilizer plant in Texas has been completely destroyed by a huge fire, local authorities have confirmed.

The massive blaze at the American Plant Food Corporation fertilizer plant has now been contained, fire officials revealed.

The air quality has now been confirmed to be safe again as Hazmat crews continue to work to clean up the site of the fire that started on Monday night.

Firefighters are still working to clear the smolder, authorities said.

However, the fertilizer plant is a total loss with only the building’s foundations and some steel beams remaining, aerial images show.

Barlett Mayor Chad Mees and Barlett Volunteer Fire Department Fire Chief Steven Wentrcek said the fire department received the call about the fire at 8:30 pm on Monday.

The plant was located at 9901 North Highway 95 Bartlett.

Fire Chief Steven Wentrcek said that when crews arrived at the scene, the building was fully engulfed.

The blaze was so large that help was sought from departments in surrounding areas.

Firefighters worked to contain a six-acre grass fire that was the result of the fire at the plant.

Back at the site of the plant, crews decided to let the fire burn out overnight once it was contained.

Water was not used to extinguish the blaze because of hazardous chemicals from the plant, and to protect the environment surrounding the plant, the fire chief said.

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“Hazard crew were on site all night, including Temple who was monitoring overnight until Round Rock hazard crews came to relieve them,” Wentrcek told KWTX.

Multiple fire agencies including Holland and Granger responded to the fire as well as Bell and Williamson County as Barlett is split between the two.

“This is a pure definition of mutual aid, especially for a small town like ours,” said Mayor Mees when discussing the different agencies who came to help.

Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and Texas Emergency Management were on the scene as TCEQ tested the air quality and provided guidance to fire crews about how to protect the surrounding environment.

The American Plant Food Corporation has 11 different locations across Texas.

The Bartlett plant opened in the early 1990s and has provided jobs in the local community since.

During a press conference, Mayor Mees stated the plant produced fertilizer for all farmers in Central Texas and was vital to the local community.

Previously to the fire, the Barlett Volunteer Fire Department made a plan with the plant in case a fire were to happen, according to Fire Chief Wentrcek.

A representative from the company was on the scene and called the hazmat restoration crew to properly dispose of the material.

The Williamson County Fire Marshal’s Office is still investigating the cause of the fire.

The first phase of cleanup is cleaning the smolder of the fire, as the full cleanup would take an estimated week or month, the fire chief stated.

The air quality continues to be monitored by the TCEQ.

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By Frank Bergman

Frank Bergman is a political/economic journalist living on the east coast. Aside from news reporting, Bergman also conducts interviews with researchers and material experts and investigates influential individuals and organizations in the sociopolitical world.

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