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24 February 2010: Church awarded $2.3 million in damages
An Abbotsford, B.C., church has been awarded $2.3 million in damages after a roofing company's negligence caused the structure to burn down. A B.C. Supreme Court judge ruled that a 2004 blaze at the Mennonite Church was connected to the use of a propane torch to adhere the first layer of the new roof. Judge Loryl D. Russell says Sur-Del Roofing employees did not use a fibreglass base sheet, allowing heat from the torch to penetrate a gap in the roof that was susceptible to fire. Russell says the company breached a building code that requires all combustible materials within 15 metres of hot work operations to be protected against ignition. In her written judgment, Russell says the roofing company also failed to use floodlights when working in the dark or conduct an adequate fire watch at the end of their workday on Dec. 11, 2004. The church was rebuilt after the blaze.....Full Story....
19 February 2010: sparks from welding torches fell more than 70ft and ignited pallets of refractory bricks
A BIG thank you has been paid to employees who worked around the clock to repair fire damage which brought steel-making at the Scunthorpe Corus works to a halt for eight days. In doing so, however, the Scunthorpe site director Sean Lyons has warned there were lessons to be learned from last month's blaze in the basic oxygen steel-making plant (BOS). Following the fire on February 19, engineers from across the 2,000-acre site worked alongside BOS production operatives and contractors to repair the damage. Mr Lyons revealed more than nine miles of cabling, as well as 700 cable joints, had to be repaired. At the same time, more than 4,000 individual wires were connected. During the eight-day rescue operation, the team had to work in an area of limited access around 20ft above floor level. Kim Southward, the works manager for steel-making, described the repair work as "a staggering achievement". Contractor cleaners in the 37-year-old plant have also been commended for their quick action in raising the alarm after spotting smoke coming from the floor below where they were working. As a result, the company's own emergency team and Humberside Fire And Rescue personnel were able to contain the fire within an hour and no one was hurt. Mr Lyons said: "I'd like to extend my thanks to everyone who helped in ensuring the repairs were done as quickly as possible and most importantly, safely. "My admiration and thanks go out to all those who responded in helping to deal with the situation. "However, what happened was extremely disappointing and we need to make every effort to ensure that something like this does not happen again." An internal investigation is still ongoing into the cause of the blaze, which is said to have cost the company millions of pounds in lost production. But initial investigations have revealed that sparks from welding torches fell more than 70ft and ignited pallets of refractory bricks, which had been stored ready for a vessel reline. Flames from the pallets then ignited almost 400 nearby cables, cutting off the power to the BOS plant. oxygen furnace.
18 Feburary 2010: Workers flee mill blaze drama!
THE quick actions of firefighters helped avert a major disaster at one of Lochaber's biggest companies this week. A blaze broke out in the BSW Kilmallie Sawmill at Corpach on Tuesday evening after it is understood sparks from a welder's gun ignited sawdust gathered beneath machinery. Fifteen firefighters, in two appliances from Fort William Fire Station and one from Kinlochleven, raced to the scene and battled for two hours wearing breathing apparatus to bring the situation under control. No one was injured in the incident, which fire bosses have described as a "real lucky escape". Night shift workers at the mill, one of the UK's largest sawmills, were evacuated from the premises which sit alongside the A830 Road to the Isles. Pat McElhinney, group manager at Fort William Fire Station, told the Lochaber News yesterday (Wednesday): "If we hadn't been called out when we were, I believe the whole business could have gone. "We would be looking at the ashes of one of the area's biggest businesses. It could have been a disaster. They've had a lucky escape in my view. "If the place had gone up, you'd probably have seen the sparks from Inverness." Mr McElhinney explained: "We were called to the scene at about 7.45pm. We were told the fire had been accidentally started by a welder. "The quick action of the Fort William and Kinlochleven crews, led by John Campbell, meant we were able evacutate everyone and extinguish the fire. Crew wore breathing apparatus as it was very smoky. "We also had initial fears we were dealing with hydraulic oil but thankfully that turned out not to be the case. "There were some issues for us as it was a double floor - a floor above a floor - and the fire was in the space between the two levels. "Within two hours everything was under control. There was damage to the floor area near conveyer belts and a lot of smoke damage throughout. "Apparently this is the third fire at the mill in 20 years." Mr McElhinney said firefighters had isolated the electrical supply and advised mill workers to cease operations for the rest of the night to enable the clear-up operation. Chief Inspector John Chisholm, Northern Constabulary's Lochaber area commander, said: "On police arrival we found that all persons had been evacuated from the sawmill building, that contingency plans had been initiated. "The cause of the fire appears to have been sparks coming from a welding gun which have ignited sawdust which had accumulated below a piece of machinery. "The necessary investigations are under way."
12 December 2009: 1 hurt after welders' sparks start fire at furniture factory
A fire at the American Atelier furniture factory in Allentown on Thursday afternoon burned table carts in a storage area and sent one worker to a hospital with smoke inhalation, a fire official said. The fire started just after 1 p.m. when sparks from welding equipment set fire to the tables in the plant at 2132 Downyflake Lane, near Lehigh Street, city Fire Marshal Tom Klocek said. ''They had welders in there, welding tracking to the ceiling,'' Klocek said. ''Some of the embers from the welding fell down to combustible materials.'' The plant, the former Pillsbury waffle factory, was evacuated immediately. The sprinkler system activated, Klocek said, but the fire went to two alarms, bringing in a total of six trucks. The worker who suffered smoke inhalation appeared to be in fairly good shape, Klocek said. The worker, who was not identified, was taken to the hospital by ambulance. Another city fire marshal, John Chorney, declared the fire accidental. Klocek said the fire damage was confined to the tables. The room affected has a concrete floor, he noted, so there was little else to burn. Klocek did not know the exact time the fire was extinguished, but all fire trucks had returned to their stations by mid-afternoon.....Full Story....
11 December 2009: Small fire evacuates building at Bay Pines Hospital
PINELLAS COUNTY (Bay News 9) -- A building at the Bay Pines Hospital facility was evacuated Friday morning after a small fire broke out. According to fire officials, the fire may have been sparked by welding that was being done in the laundry room of building 13, which does not hold patients. The fire burned cardboard in the room, according to officials, which set off the sprinkler system. About two inches of water poured onto the floor of the room. No damaged was caused by the fire but officials said the building will remain evacuated while the cleanup takes place. No injuries were reported.....Full Story....
10 December 2009: Construction worker accidentally lights old grease
Northern Hotel general manager Mike Nelson was at home at about 1:30 p.m. Thursday when he got the call that the historic building he and his brother, Chris Nelson, are remodeling had caught fire.He drove downtown, parked in the lot by the Crowne Plaza and immediately smelled the grease fire.“I could smell steaks from 60 years ago,” he said. Indeed, a construction worker who was demolishing the kitchen hood system with a propane torch accidentally started the old grease on fire inside the duct work, according to the Billings Fire Department. The property is insured, and the fire, which was quickly extinguished, caused an estimated $7,000 in damage. Mike Nelson said his initial fears were for the 20 people working in the building, but they all got out safely. One firefighter suffered a steam burn on the wrist and was treated at the site. A passer-by who saw smoke called in the fire at 1:27 p.m., said Billings Assistant Fire Chief Frank Odermann. Tom Stryjewski said he was getting money from his bank when he spotted trouble.....Full Story....
29 November 2009: Welding ignites lint in laundry room
NEW HARTFORD, N.Y. (WKTV) - Utica Firefighters battled smoke after fire broke out at Faxton-St. Luke's Hospital Saturday morning, according to Chief Fire Marshal Raymond Beck. Officials say that the fire broke out in the laundry room of the hospital at around 9:30 a.m. Firefighters arrived to find the room full of smoke. Further investigation indicated that dryer link and pipe insulation were smoldering in the drop ceiling, according to fire officials. Firefighters never encountered open flames but the material smoldered and followed the path of many steam pipes. Firefighters extinguished the smoke at around 11:30 a.m. Fire investigators remained on the scene until noon. They discovered that the dryer lint and pipe insulation were sparked by a welder repairing doors on one of the washing machines. No injuries were reported.....Full Story....
23 June 2009: Welding sparks cause Chicago-area hospital fire
EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) - Fire officials say a blaze at a suburban Chicago hospital was caused by welding sparks. Thomas Janetske, division chief of the Evanston Fire Department, says damage was limited to an area under construction at Evanston Hospital. He says patients were never at risk, and no injuries were reported. About 100 workers were evacuated. Janetske says firefighters arrived at the hospital Monday afternoon to find heavy smoke and fire on three floors of the new building. The fire was extinguished within several minutes.
03 April 2009: Water entering confined space ends in death of welder
Richards Dry Dock and Engineering Ltd has been ordered to pay over £60k in fines and prosecution costs after a welder was electrocuted. The prosecution relates to an incident in August 2005 when welder Kevin Hall was working inside a confined space. Other work above caused water to inadvertently flow down and into the space below where Mr Hall was working and he was electrocuted. ....Full Story....
26 March 2009: Four dead, six injured in east China refrigerated warehouse fire
Four people died and six others were slightly injured in a refrigerated warehouse fire in east China's Shandong Province, authorities said Thursday. The fire occurred at around 10:40 a.m. Thursday when workers were dismantling an old refrigerated compartment of a foreign trade foodstuff firm in Anqiu City, the city government said. One person died at the scene and three died in the hospital. The six people who were injured have been hospitalized. The fire was put out at mid day. An initial investigation result showed the blaze was caused when thermal insulation materials were ignited as workers were welding pipes, the government said. ....Full Story....
21 March 2009: Empress Had Sprinklers Off Before Fire
The sprinkler system in the Empress Casino pavilion had been disconnected and fire doors were not working when a fire destroyed the building, the city's building inspector said Tuesday. The sprinklers and fire doors were temporarily out of service as part of a $50 million renovation project, said David Mackley, director of inspection services for Joliet. That in itself was not unusual for a project under construction, he said, noting that work crews had a fire watch in place for a safety measure. But once a welding job on a grease duct in the ceiling area ignited a fire on Friday morning, workers on site using fire extinguishers were unable to stop the blaze from spreading. The sprinklers and fire doors were temporarily out of service as part of a $50 million renovation project, said David Mackley, director of inspection services for Joliet. ....Full Story....
18 March 2009: Central London fire hits immigration tribunals
Around 130 people were evacuated yesterday when a large fire took hold on the top floor and roof of a Ministry of Justice building in central London. The fire at Bream’s Buildings in Chancery Lane, which houses the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal, broke out at around 3.40 pm. Around 75 firefighters and 15 appliances tackled the blaze, which went on through the night. The fire severely damaged the fifth (top) floor and roof area which was undergoing refurbishment, and firefighters were continuing with a salvage operation on the fourth floor this morning. A spokesperson from the London Fire Brigade confirmed that three 15kg propane gas cylinders had been found on the roof of the building. Smoke could be seen billowing up hundreds of feet from all around central London, with scores of people uploading pictures they had taken on social networking sites such as twitter. A Tribunal Service spokesperson told Sky News that it was likely that hearings scheduled for the rest of the week at the building would be postponed. ....Full Story....
25 February 2009: Site Inspection Goes 'Sauer,' OSHA Serves $41,400 Fine
OSHA has cited Great Lakes Sauerkraut Co. LLC with $41,400 in proposed fines following inspections conducted under OSHA's Site Specific Targeting Plan. The agency cited the Shortsville, N.Y., sauerkraut maker with 16 alleged serious violations of safety and health standards at its manufacturing facility. Specifically, OSHA's inspection found numerous instances of moving machine parts not guarded against accidental employee contact; lack of a hazardous energy control program, training, and equipment to prevent the accidental startup of machinery; unguarded live electrical parts; improper storage of compressed gas cylinders; and fall hazards stemming from a lack of fall protection, inadequate ladder safety, uncovered floor openings, and unguarded open-sided work platforms and stairways. Additional hazards included the lack of a confined space training program for employees whose duties involve entering sauerkraut tanks; lack of a hearing conservation program for employees exposed to excessive noise levels; and lack of training in fire extinguisher use and hazards associated with incipient stage fire fighting. "These citations encompass a cross-section of mechanical, electrical, fall, noise, confined space, and other hazards that should have been addressed prior to the inspection," said Christopher Adams, OSHA's area director in Syracuse, N.Y., the office that conducted the inspections. OSHA issues serious citations when death or serious physical harm is likely to result from hazards about which the employer knew or should have known. The company has 15 business days from receipt of the citations and proposed penalties to comply or contest them to the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. ....Full Story....
24 February 2009: Firm cited in worker death $56,000 penalty may be levied for safety violations
SCHENECTADY — The federal government proposed to fine a local company $56,000 for “willful and serious” health and safety violations after the death of an employee at his Erie Boulevard workplace last August. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced the citation against Precision Industrial Maintenance Inc. on Monday. A company spokesman was not available for comment. OSHA said the company at 1710 Erie Boulevard committed one willful citation, carrying a $35,000 proposed fine, for not providing employees with confined space rescue training at least every 12 months. It also said the company committed five serious citations, carrying $21,000 in fines, for failing to test conditions in confined spaces before entry; for not completing required entry permits; for not providing confined space training to employees; for not evaluating rescue services for employees entering confined spaces; and for not posting confined space warning signs. “These citations encompass health and safety hazards associated with work in permit-required confined spaces, such as this one,” said Edward Jerome, OSHA’s area director in Albany in a news release. “These conditions must be addressed promptly and effectively. Left uncorrected, they expose employees to the potential hazard of asphyxia, which can be fatal,” Jerome said. The employee, who was never identified, died at Ellis Hospital Aug. 27 after being overwhelmed by toxic fumes in a truck at the company’s headquarters. A second employee tried to help the first man, was also overcome, but survived. Schenectady firefighters pulled the two men unconscious from the back of a tank truck. Both men were taken in critical condition to Ellis Hospital and admitted to the intensive care unit. Jerome said OSHA defines a willful violation as an action committed with plain indifference to or intentional disregard for employee safety and health. He said OSHA issues serious citations when death or serious physical harm is likely to result from hazards about which the employer knew or should have known. “One of the best means of preventing serious workplace hazards is to establish an effective safety and health management system through which management and employees work together to actively identify, analyze and eliminate work-related hazards,” said Jerome. Precision Maintenance has 15 business days to contest them before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission. The inspection was conducted by OSHA’s Albany Area Office. ....Full Story....
17 February 2009: Welder at Boardman plant dies after explosion
BOARDMAN, Ore. -- A welder has died in an industrial accident at ConAgra Foods Lamb Weston in Boardman, authorities said Tuesday. Kevin Paul Gregerson, 21, of Hermiston, was reportedly buried in debris after an explosion inside a tank, reported The East Oregonian. Boardman fire and police departments, along with the Morrow County Sheriff's Office responded to a call at 12:47 p.m. Monday at the potato processing plant at 600 Columbia Ave. N.E. A small confined space rescue team also was called. Gregerson's body was recovered just after 8 p.m., the newspaper reported. Stephanie Childs, spokeswoman for ConAgra Foods, said Gregerson worked for one of the company's contractors. He reportedly worked for Northwest Metal Fabricators. "We're in the process of doing everything we can to understand what happened," Childs said. "We're definitely looking into the matter. We consider this to be a very unfortunate incident and extend our deepest sympathies to the family." Melanie Mesaros, spokeswoman for Oregon Occupational Health and Safety Administration, said officials were at the tank Tuesday investigating. Mesaros said officials would generally look into what kind of training and supervision the employee had. They would also look at the company's safety policies. Oregon OSHA has conducted three scheduled inspections at the Boardman plant since 2002, Mesaros said. No violations were found in April 2006. A serious violation related to machine guards was reported in a July 2006 inspection that resulted in a $780 penalty. In September 2007, the company received an "other than serious" citation. Violations are listed as serious or other than serious, Mesaros said. ....Full Story....
09 February 2009: Steel plant blaze damage may hit $1m
Fire officials estimate a weekend blaze at a steel manufacturer caused more than $1 million in damage. Port Colborne Fire Chief Tom Cartwright said crews were called to Barber Hymac Hydro Inc., on the corner of Barrick Road and Elm Street, around 11 a.m. Saturday. When crews arrived, there was heavy smoke pouring from the building. About five workers were inside when the blaze broke out, Cartwright said. Three were taken to hospital, but all were released Saturday afternoon, he said. The fire is believed to have started when workers were doing some modifications on a new elevated crane. Cartwright said either a hot piece of steel or a spark from a welding torch flew between the inner and outer walls of the building and ignited the spray foam insulation.....Full Story....
08 February 2009: Metro construction fire
A FIRE broke out at the construction site of a Metro station on Henan Road N. in Zhabei District yesterday afternoon. It resulted in a major traffic jam but there were no casualties. The fire broke out 20 meters underground in the Tiantong Road Metro Station at 12:15pm and was brought under control in about 15 minutes, police said. The station is where Metro lines 10 and 12 will converge. More than 10 fire engines rushed to the site and workers were evacuated safely. Though the cause of the fire is still being investigated, reports suggest it may have been started by welding sparks. ....Full Story....
05 February 2009: Fire destroys gigantic Suffern warehouse
A major warehouse fire that caused explosions and collapsed walls was finally out about 4:30 this morning after burning more than eight hours, fire and police officials said. Despite the frigid temperatures that iced the firefighters’ footing and the danger of propane, gasoline and flammable chemicals inside the building, the Conserv Construction warehouse, there were no serious injuries. A Hillcrest firefighter who was hit by water and fell was treated at the scene. There were no other reports this morning of injuries. “It was the biggest fire I have ever seen and I’ve been here 30 years,” Suffern police Sgt. John Mallon said this morning. “There were 10 to 12 companies there. The coordination alone was incredible.” Investigators will determine later this morning what caused the spectacular blaze at the 30,000-square-foot warehouse on Washington Avenue. The spraying water created a mist of ice, frosting uniforms and faces and creating icicles on helmets, jackets, boots and mustaches as temperatures fell into the teens. The estimated warehouse became a maze of dangers for the firefighters. The industrial building contained flammable materials in a welding shop, propane tanks, various chemicals and gasoline. Fire danced across the water inside the building, likely from gasoline, as firefighters first attempted to attack the blaze on the ground, authorities said. "This is a very dangerous fire because of the unknown amount of chemicals, flammable materials, and 55-gallon drums inside," Rockland Fire Coordinator Gordon Wren Jr. said as the fire raged. At one point, firefighters knocked down doors but were forced out of the building by the heavy black smoke, Suffern Police Chief Clarke Osborn said. Knowing what was inside the building, Suffern Deputy Fire Chief Dan McInerney and officials with Rockland Fire and Emergency Services decided to withdraw the firefighters and attack the blaze from outside. Soon afterward, "their decision was proven correct when explosions started and the roof and walls started collapsing," Wren said. While no one was hurt, the building was destroyed even as the firefighters continued fighting the blaze. The fire started just before 8 p.m., with volunteers from Suffern, Spring Valley, Monsey, Tallman, and Mahwah, N.J., being called. Ramapo Valley Ambulance Corps and Rockland Paramedic Services were among other emergency personnel responding.
03 February 2009: Welding sparks blaze
A massive fire in an industrial area in the city’s northwest, visible from Edmonton’s downtown, left three buildings owned by an local business in ruins yesterday afternoon, causing about $1 million in damages. Tall plumes of smoke hovered over the entire northwest side of the city around 2 p.m. as fire crews tried to contain the blaze at Sure Shot Sandblasting at 222 Avenue and 115 Street, making sure flames wouldn’t spread to nearby businesses. Fire crews say the blaze began in an area of the property that was under construction. Manager Brook Parker spoke briefly with Metro about the incident yesterday afternoon, confirming all employees escaped the blaze unharmed. “We’re very busy dealing with this, but yes, everyone is OK,” he said. John Muir, a spokesman with the Edmonton Fire Department, said fire investigators believe work crews were inside a large building on the property. “A flame from the welding machine came in contact with insulation causing the fire,” said Muir. “One of the people tried extinguishing the fire, and … was unsuccessful.” Muir says everyone was evacuated from the building and fire crews were called in around 1:30 p.m. The fire was contained shortly before 2:30 p.m. and crews were able to douse the flames around 3:45 p.m. Traffic on 215 Street, south of Yellowhead Trail, was blocked off by police throughout most of the afternoon as crew worked to put out the large blaze. As thick clouds of black smoke rolled through the area, residents and employees at nearby businesses watched as their power was cut off. Power was not restored to many homes and businesses for hours after the flames were doused. ....Full Story....
19 January 2009: Fire causes scare at Mpls. hospital
Patients and doctors alike got a scare at a Twin Cities hospital Monday after smoke was found inside operating rooms. Fire alarms went off inside Fairview University but workers initially couldn’t determine where the smoke was coming from. Firefighters arrived and found a fire had actually started at the construction site for the new children's hospital where workers were welding. "They put the fire out but the smoke traveled in the air intake into the third and forth floor operating rooms of the hospital and set off the alarms," said Minneapolis Fire Chief Todd White. Official said the smoke did not impact any patients and didn't damage any equipment. ....Full Story....
02 December 2008: Welding Torch Sparked Ship Fire
A spark from a welder's torch in a laundry room raced through an air duct and caused an "explosive-type" fire aboard the cruise ship Ecstasy, the president of Carnival Corp. said Tuesday. Company president Bob Dickinson said the fire on the second deck quickly spread Monday to two decks above and the outside mooring area. Thick, black smoke billowed from the stern of the ship Monday as it passed the Miami Beach skyline into open water. Coast Guard Lt. Dennis Seehoaus said Carnival Cruise Lines initially told him the crew was dealing with a small fire and didn't need help. The National Transportation Safety Board had announced Tuesday that it would investigate the fire. NTSB officials said they were not only concerned about how the blaze began, but also how the crew of Ecstasy responded, Andrew Colton of CBS News Station WFOR-TV in Miami reports. The fire started a few hours after it left a Miami port Monday afternoon for a cruise to Cozumel, Mexico. More than 2,000 passengers hoping for a four-day excursion were moved to the front of the ship, as the laundry room in the back burned. Several Coast Guard ships arrived to battle the flames, while members of the crew pitched in with water hoses on board, CBS News Correspondent Byron Pitts reports. A half hour before the blaze broke out, vacationers went through fire safety drills with the crew. About 60 people were injured in the fire, most of them suffering from smoke inhalation and one with an undisclosed heart problem. At least 11 people were taken to hospitals. "Within a minute's time, the fire doors in that area of the ship totally isolated that part of the vessel," said Bob Dickinson, president of Carnival. "The air-conditioning system was shut down so that the fire would not get any oxygen internally." It took firefighters, who arrived in tugboats, three hours to put out the flames. Before they came, crew members sprayed the fire with water hoses. Although many of the passengers assembled calmly on the main deck at the front of the 855-foot-long ocean liner, no lifeboats were lowered into the water. A tugboat pulled the 70,367-ton ship back to the Port of Miami, trailed by three boats spraying water on the lower levels. Crews worked on cooling down hot spots before the ship got to shore. The ship moored at the Port of Miami early Tuesday, and passengers boarded buses for hotels. More than 800 went to the Fountainebleau Hilton Resort and Towers, which had to bring in extra workers and chefs to handle the crush. Dickinson said the passengers would receive a full refund and a free cruise. ....Full Story....
20 November 2008: Fire Causes Damage at Central Wisconsin Cooperative
A Marathon County farm business suffered about $400,000 in damages after a fire started Monday evening in its service shop. According to authorities, the blaze at the Central Wisconsin Cooperative in Stratford most likely started after a hot ember from welding work ignited material a combine. No one was in the building at the time of the fire. The co-op's general manager says the structure is sound, but needs roof repairs and a large amount of clean-up. Two combines were also lost in the fire. In the meantime, Central Wisconsin Cooperative is now working to open a temporary service shop at its facilities in Auburndale.
18 November 2008: Fire ravages Shreveport playhouse
The Shreveport Little Theatre fell victim to a morning fire, which was fought by the Shreveport Fire Department. Twenty-seven units responded to fight the blaze. The theater was currently undergoing a $1.8 million expansion project to replace backstage space lost in a 1986 fire. This morning's fire spread through the main building at 812 Margaret Place, and the auditorium, the stage and the lobby were severely damaged. One construction worker was treated for smoke inhalation. "We have a pretty good case to say that the fire started from the welding that went on from the construction of the addition at the back of the building," said Shreveport Fire Chief Brian Crawford. "That's our presumption at the time."....Full Story....
14 November 2008: Human error blamed for China National Games stadium fire
Management negligence was to blame for Tuesday's fire at an indoor stadium under construction for next year's 11th China National Games in the eastern city of Jinan, the city government said on Thursday. An initial investigation found workers used petrol-fueled burner to melt waterproof sheeting on the stadium roof, but the flame ignited the flammable materials, the Jinan municipal government said in a statement. "The accident exposed some serious problems in work safety management by the construction company," it said. Beijing Urban Construction Group Co. Ltd., the construction project contractor, and Zhejiang Jiangnan Project Management Co. Ltd, the project supervision company, were working with local work safety authorities in the investigation into the cause of the blaze, it said. It took more than three hours for 200 firemen and 44 fire engines to extinguish the fire on Tuesday, which spread to an area of 1,284 square meters. No casualties were reported. Situated in the eastern suburbs of Jinan, capital of Shandong Province, the stadium is to be part of the Olympic Sports Center, a sporting complex for next year's National Games. Construction was started in March last year with an estimated investment of 486 million yuan (71.5 million U.S. dollars). It was almost completed and was due to undergo an imminent quality inspection. It covers an area of 58,000 square meters with 10,000 seats. The fire was the second at the site in four months after a blaze on July 27 lasted for four hours. No deaths or injuries were reported then, but the flames spread to about 3,000 square meters. Investigators said sparks during welding were to blame for the previous fire. Jinan will host the 11th National Games, China's biggest sporting event, next year. The four-yearly event was held last in Nanjing, eastern Jiangsu Province, in 2005.
10 November 2008: Fire destroys Neepawa warehouses
Witnesses say the building went up like a match box. The flames were so intense that smoke could be seen in Brandon. It took just minutes for a major Neepawa business to be destroyed. "It was a real inferno; it was quite a fire," said Jake Dornn who lives across the street from the industrial park. It started Sunday afternoon at Prairie Forest Products wood processing plant. One warehouse caught fire, and that quickly spread to another. More than 70 fire fighters from five different communities were called out to battle the blaze. Extra water had to be trucked in as well. There were concerns about chemicals in one of the buildings, but officials now say there was never a risk. "The danger was it was a building designed to burn down in 15 minutes; it did exactly that, it burned down very quick, very fast," said Neepawa Fire Chief Scott Gibson. Twenty four hours after it started, there were still embers burning. When the fire broke out five maintenance workers were inside one of the buildings. They tried to put the blaze out themselves but it was too intense. "They were welding and torching down there but the guys were in the plant and there was no smoke or anything and then all of a sudden it just burst out," said plant manager Rick Knechtel. The workers got out safely before fire wiped out both warehouses. The good news is that no one was hurt or killed. The bad news is that more than a hundred people are now temporarily out of work. "The ones that came in, we sent home. We will have some on staff for now; once we get the go-ahead we'll need some for clean up. We want to rebuild," said Knechtel. The company's newest building was spared from the flames. Its grand opening was only a few weeks ago.
09 November 2008: Staff summoned over company blaze
Employees of Global House, a construction materials firm that was almost burned to the ground in Chiang Mai's Saraphi district on Thursday morning, were summoned for questioning so that the case could be concluded next week, a police official said yesterday. Forensic police officers have not yet investigated the scene, which was currently sealed for safety inspection, but they should be able to do so on November 11, said Pol Lt-Colonel Darun Thunjai of the Saraphi Police Station. The fire, which caused over Bt3 billion in damages, was reportedly started by sparks from the use of a welding tool to fix an air-conditioner. The blaze spread to the plastic wrapper on the ceiling thermal insulator and spread to cans of thinner and paints and quickly through the building.
06 November 2008: Fire at the Appleton Paper Plant
Firefighters in Southern Blair County turned out in force early Thursday afternoon to deal with the fire at the Appleton paper plant. Because the paper mill is such a huge operation, and so many different chemicals are used in the facility, any emergency alarm there is treated as a significant matter. There was a big turnout of responders to deal with this fire alarm. The fire was discovered a short time after noon in the pulp mill section of Appleton's Spring Mill paper plant. Because it was at the top of one industrial building in the manufacturing complex, the location of the fire was difficult to reach. That caused some problems for the people who were trying to put the fire out. But there little doubt as to what had started the blaze. The fire was located in the pulp mill on the roof. There was some welding going on and some roofing material caught on fire. First on the scene was the plant's internal action team. That's a group of employees who have been specifically trained to deal with any sort of in-plant emergency. Because of what they discovered, local fire companies were called in to take care of the problem. Appleton officials say the entire fire-fighting effort went just as it should. The plant manager said because of the fire's location, production of paper at the mill was not affected and repairs to the pulp mill should not present any significant problems.
10 October 2008: OSHA finds safety violations after brewery fire
Federal regulators have fined F.X. Matt Brewing Co. $5,000 for safety violations following a fire that destroyed the company's bottling facilities. U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration officials say the fine was reduced from $7,000 after the brewery took steps to correct violations. The blaze started accidentally in May when two employees working on a welding project inadvertently melted a plastic conveyor belt. The fire caused $10 million in damages to the company's bottling operations, affecting production for a month. The agency cited the brewery for multiple serious violations in connection with the fire, including welding without the removal of fire hazards. Another citation was for not having a person responsible for monitoring welding.
09 October 2008: Explosion Sparks Fire At Building In West Park
A tank exploded in a West Park building Thursday morning, causing a fire that produced billowing clouds of smoke. The fire broke out at a recycling center at Southwest 58th Terrace and 21st Street just before noon. Two men in the building were cutting metal with a welding torch that used acetylene gas. The men said the pressure gauge suddenly rose and the tank exploded, sparking the fire, Local 10's Roger Lohse reported.
08 October 2008: Boulevard fire rains burning debris from roof
The former Jersey City home of legendary Mayor Frank "I am the Law" Hague caught fire yesterday morning, officials said. The three-alarm blaze at 2600 Kennedy Blvd. started around 9:34 a.m. as workers on scaffolding at the top of the 10-story building accidentally set a rubber tarpaulin on fire while welding a steel I-beam, Fire Director Armando Roman said. One of the construction workers, Jose Nejiauyoa, 45, suffered second-degree burns to his left forearm and first-degree burns to his neck, Roman said. Another construction worker suffered smoke inhalation, he said. Firefighters brought the fire under control in about an hour, Roman said. Roughly 113 apartments, between the third and 10th floors, sustained moderate water and smoke damage, Roman said. Residents were allowed back into their homes around 11 a.m. The construction workers from Watertrol Inc., of Scotch Plains, were replacing an exterior I-beam at the northeast corner of the building, officials said. Residents of the condos said they saw burning debris fall from the upper levels of the building. Diane Henderson, a resident on the first floor, was in the bathroom when she looked out the window to see what her dog was barking at. "I saw fire coming down from the roof," she said. Lit debris was setting bushes on fire, she said. City officials said the site did not have building department permits for scaffolding or a sidewalk bridge, and the Fire Department had not issued a permit for welding or burn cutting. Each penalty carries a $2,000 fine, said mayoral spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill. No summonses have been issued because the federal Office of Safety and Health Administration, which can enforce stricter penalties, is still investigating, she said. Jason Chupick, secretary of the building's condo association, said the project's architect has worked closely with the city. "I would find that highly improbable," he said of construction happening without the permits. Regarded as Hudson County's most powerful politician, Hague was mayor from 1917 to 1947.
07 October 2008: Fire at Lidl warehouse
A fire that swept through the main warehouse of the Lidl supermarket chain near Thessaloniki early on Tuesday afternoon was showing signs of abating following a swift response by the fire brigade, which dispatched roughly 50 firefighters to the scene. Welding jobs conducted on the roof of the warehouse, located in Agios Athanasios, northwest of the northern Greek city, was apparently the cause of the blaze, which spread quickly to flammable materials stored inside.
01 October 2008: £10million Cutty Sark blaze caused by an overheating vacuum cleaner
Lazy guards failed to spot a running vacuum on the Cutty Sark which started a devastating fire. One had fallen asleep in a cafe reading his Bible at 9pm while his mate failed to do patrols, a police inquiry found. Just after 4am the men were in their security hut and smelled burning. But they delayed calling the fire service for 30 minutes by which time the 139-year-old sailing ship was well alight, causing £10million of damage. Det Chief Insp Dave Garwood said yesterday: "Had they not taken it easy and put their feet up they could have prevented the fire taking hold." Builders, restoring the Cutty Sark tea clipper, used an industrial vacuum as they removed the ship's concrete ballast and left it on when they clocked off for the weekend. It had been running for two days when it overheated. The security staff later altered logs to hide their skiving. They were sacked. More than 40 firefighters battled the blaze in Greenwich, South East London, as temperatures reached 1,100C on May 21 last year. Police checked CCTV and interviewed witnesses but found no evidence of arson. It is not known if the fire alarm was working because it had not been tested for months. The Health and Safety Executive found that workmen were messy, did not clean up and left machinery on. A vacuum had overheated once before and been repaired. A thermal cut-out to stop it catching fire would have cost just £5. The HSE has now asked Italian maker Soteco to fit the devices to UK models. The Cutty Sark Trust may sue the contractors for negligence. The repair bill, much of it funded by the Lottery, is now £35million and the restoration project is two years behind schedule. Trust chief Richard Doughty said: "We came close to losing the ship."
29 September 2008: Fire causes $1 million in damage to Tulsa business
Fire officials have determined the cause of a fire that did more than $1 million in damage to a Tulsa business late Monday. The fire at Harley Hollan Excavating, 5677 S. 107th East Ave., started about 10 p.m. when hot metal debris from torch-cutting operations smoldered and caused a combustible material to ignite, Fire Capt. Michael Baker said. Crews extinguished the blaze while dealing with the risk of hazardous welding and cutting equipment inside the two-story metal building. The heaviest damage was to the workshop area of the business. The office area containing computer equipment and business records was not damaged.
28 September 2008: Firefighters extinguish fire at plant
An Advance Food Co. employee was slightly injured Sunday morning when a fire started in the raw processing area of the plant. Plant employee Monte Prall was treated and released at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center following the 11:30 a.m. fire. Prall apparently attempted to put out the fire with his hands. Fire Department reports said a maintenance employee was welding on the conveyor system when the plastic belt became overheated and caught fire. The sprinkler system activated, but firefighters succeeded in extinguishing the blaze, then removed smoke from the building, according to reports. Brian Hayden, a spokes-man for Advance Food Co., said the fire ruined the belt and a detector attached to the belt, but damage was less than $50,000. Firefighters returned to the plant Sunday afternoon to scan for any remaining heat, but none was found.
22nd September 2008: Fire at power station
THREE fire engines, a hazardous materials unit and a hydraulic platform unit were sent to Fiddler’s Ferry Power Station on Monday after reports of a fire. Contractors had ignited a plastic insulation overlay while welding, said Carl Hanson, Warrington Fire Station’s station manager. They phoned 999 after the accident which happened while they were welding a staircase to the outer corrugated steel surface of the waste water treatment plant, which is still being built. Some of the heat embers fell down and ignited a plastic sheet covering fibreglass insulation, Mr Hanson said. It was not a serious fire but due to the nature of the blaze fire crews from three stations attended. There was little damage; only melted plastic and charred insulation. The fibreglass did not catch alight at any point, but was charred by the heat from the melting plastic, he said. Fire crews from Warrington, Stockton Heath and Widnes fire stations attended the incident, at 1pm.
17 September 2008: Teachers, students evacuated after school fire
Teachers and students at a Jimboomba private school were evacuated yesterday when a small fire broke out in a bin, sending fumes into the air and causing three children to become ill. Sparks from welding tools are believed to have started the blaze, which broke out in a bin on a construction site at Emmaus College about 11.15am. Fire crews quickly extinguished the fire, but some smouldering polystyrene bricks were found and the school was evacuated as a precaution. One teacher and three students were taken to Beaudesert Hospital suffering minor smoke inhalation. Air quality testing was conducted and remaining students were allowed to return to class a short time later.
17 September 2008: Fire hits Veterans, St. Luke’s Taguig Medical Center
Two separate fires yesterday hit the Veterans Memorial Medical Center in Quezon City and a building of the St. Luke’s Medical Center under construction in The Fort. QC Fire Marshal Oscar Villegas said flames broke out around 4 a.m. at the canteen but a firewall spared the main building where patients were confined. The fire reached second alarm and spread to a nearby flea market in Project 6 but was declared out after an hour. The facility is up for relocation following a mix-use development plan to complete the 250-hecatare central business district project at the East and North Triangle by the national government. In Taguig, a spark from a welding job led to a blaze that damaged a tower under construction for the St. Luke’s Medical Center. No one was reported hurt in the 11:35 a.m. blaze although the damaged to property could reach P1 million, Senior Insp. Buenaventura Cuevas of the Taguig Fire Department said. Investigation showed that a worker was using a welding torch at the roofdeck when sparks ignited a fire that engulfed the air-conditioning system, prompting workers to evacuate the site. The outbreak reached fourth alarm at 12:05 a.m. before responding firefighters put it out 20 minutes later. The Veterans hospital canteen has been hit by fire twice before, according to Villegas, noting that arson probers said that defective electrical wiring as the culprit. In terms of Taguig’s quick response, Cuevas cited the usefulness of the closed circuit television camera at the adjacent South of Market building. “The thermal capability of the CCTV detected the fire during its initial stage so we were able to rush to the scene,” he said. The security camera is one of four mounted by the city government at The Fort, Taguig Mayor Freddie Tinga said. “A City Protection System where advanced security cameras will be set up in vital points and major intersections in the whole of Taguig will help us not only in the fight against crime, but also in ensuring the safety of our constituents,” he said. To be completed by October 2009, the new St. Luke’s hospital would rise on a 154,000 square-meter lot, making it one of the biggest hospitals in Metro Manila in terms of total floor space. The P9-billion facility has two towers: a 14-story, 600-bed hospital building and a Medical Arts Building for 375 doctors’ offices. It has a helipad that can accommodate a Huey chopper and parking for 1,400 vehicles.
16 September 2008: Fire won't delay store opening
fire Tuesday in a diorama at the Bass Pro Shops store under construction at the Promenade Shops at Orchard Valley will not affect the store's planned mid-October opening, a company official said Wednesday. The fire, which caused an estimated $50,000 in damage, was started by workers welding an iron handrail for the stairs at the entrance to the building, according to the Manteca Fire Department. The store's promotions manager, Larry Leidelmeyer, said Wednesday that a small portion of one of the dioramas adjoining the staircase was damaged along with two of the displays in the diorama. A fire sprinkler inside the diorama was activated during the blaze, according to the Fire Department. Leidelmeyer said fans were used to clear out what smoke was in the building, and all work on the interior of the building was halted for the day. There were no injuries reported by Bass Pro Shops employees or construction workers in the building, he stated in a news release. Work on the 120,000-square-foot building resumed Wednesday morning, he said. The shopping center is at the southeast corner of Highway 120 and South Union Road.
09 September 2008: Myer store reopens
The Myer Bourke street department store has re-open to the public after yesterday's fire. Around three thousand staff and customers were evacuated at the height of the blaze in a services shaft on the fifth floor. It had spread to the ninth floor before 60 firefighters put it out well over an hour later. The blaze is believed to have started in an area under construction as part of major refurbishment works. An investigation has begun into the fire, but the MFB's Rick Gili says it is too early to say what triggered the fire. "We're not sure, it appears as if it might've started on level five where there's a bit of construction going on but at this stage, fire investigation hasn't done an analysis so we're not able to determine the exact cause of the fire," he said.
UPDATE: THE Myer fire that brought Melbourne to a standstill was caused by a workman using an oxyacetylene cutter in a rubbish-filled shaft. Investigators say a huge amount of discarded items were left in the shaft, which houses the city store's water pipes. It is believed a tradesman's use of cutting equipment on a pipe in a section under renovation resulted in embers flying into the rubbish pile. "I don't know how the stuff got in there," the investigator said. "But this fire was never going to go anywhere. It's like having a fire in a chimney. It was just rubbish that was burnt." Although 2500 shoppers and 500 staff were evacuated, investigators say it was a small blaze that posed no serious threat. The only damage to the building was a hole cut to get access to the fire. "There is no problem with the building whatsoever," an investigator said. It took firefighters more than an hour to control the fire because it was difficult to find its origin. The fire spread from the fifth to the ninth floor before it was put out. Myer was open for business the next morning. The blaze caused long delays to peak-hour traffic in the city, closing parts of Swanston, Bourke and Little Bourke streets. It also affected 12 tram routes.
02 September 2008: Police investigate Atlantis fire
Dubai Police are investigating the cause of a fire that broke out in the Atlantis Hotel in Palm Jumeirah earlier this morning. Investigators believe the fire initially began after workers were carrying out work in the lobby while welding. "We are investigating the matter and will know more later but it was only a small fire," said Brig Abdul Jalil Mahdi, deputy director of Dubai Police's Criminal Investigation Department (CID) for Preventative Security. Firemen rushed to the scene this morning and struggled for at least an hour before the blaze was controlled. The hotel was immediately evacuated and no casualties have been reported in the incident. Meanwhile, motorists heading to work described seeing thick clouds of smoke billowing from the hotel. The road heading to the hotel was also blocked out by the police, a witness said. A statement issued by The Atlantis, The Palm, said it was unsure of the extent of the damage. It also said: “The site of the fire appears to be localized in the lobby area of the resort.”
30 August 2008: Matrix Metals fined $96,000 for safety violations
The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Matrix Metals LLC's Richmond (Texas) Foundry for allegedly failing to protect its employees from safety and health hazards and has proposed penalties totaling $96,000. "This company has exposed its employees to unsafe working conditions," said Dean McDaniel, OSHA's regional administrator in Dallas. "It is fortunate in this case that no one was injured." Following a health inspection that began March 5 and a safety inspection on March 12 at the company's facility on Collins Road in Richmond, OSHA issued 33 serious and seven other-than-serious violations. The Houston-based company, a supplier of castings for steel valves, and oilfield, locomotive and construction equipment, has about 325 employees at its Richmond Foundry.
21 August 2008: Blaze wrecks car parts warehouse - $5million
A massive fire has gutted New Zealand's largest car parts warehouse in south Auckland. Seventy firefighters attended the blaze at that began when welding sparks ignited excess fuel that lead into a holding tank. Investigators say Strong for Honda management did well to clear the employees out as the fire spread quickly through the Onehunga factory. Fire crews from across Auckland battled the blaze which created a plume of toxic smoke. Chief Fire Officer Graham Fuller says firefighters managed to contain the blaze to the one building and stop the flames spreading to neighbouring factories. He says the building is probably around 80% destroyed, including the contents inside. Despite damage estimated at up to $3 million, the owner Warren Strong still managed some humour. "Yeah I just checked on the muffins and they're still ok in the lunch room, so that's excellent," says Strong. A couple of fire teams were still on site on Thursday night in case hotspots reignite. The Fire Service says it will make sure any run-off from the foam it used on the fire is contained
20 August 2008: Logan Fire Department Called To Put Out Blaze At Police Station
Construction of a new police station in Logan suffered a setback Wednesday when a welder’s spark caught the structure on fire. Authorities say the welders were working on the second story of a new section of the police station when some insulation caught fire. Firefighters were called in to extinguish the fire. They say the damage was not as bad as it could have been because the building is being constructed from materials that are not highly flammable.
20 August 2008: Welding work causes rooftop fire at hospital
Richmond County firefighters were able to quickly extinguish a small roof fire that ignited Wednesday night on a portion of Doctors Hospital. The fire was reported about 7:45 p.m. and was caused as the result of welding work taking place on new construction at the hospital, said Augusta Fire Capt. Kenneth N. Roberts. The blaze was put out within 10 minutes and caused no major damage and didn't require any evacuations. Had the fire department not extinguished the fire quickly, "It could have been threatening" to the rest of the hospital, Capt. Roberts said. The fire occurred at a site where new construction is adjoining the original facility. Capt. Roberts said five units responded to the Wheeler Road hospital.
18 August 2008: Fire at Bryan plant causes at least $60,000 in damages
The Bryan Fire Department was called to a roof fire at New Era Corp., 520 E. Mulberry St., at 2:28 p.m. Upon arrival, firefighters found the fire burning a 10- by 12-foot section of roof and side wall. The fire, believed to have been started by welding equipment during the installation of a piece of machinery, was contained to this area. Initially, employees in areas outside the fire were able to continue work. However, the department reported when they realized they needed to flow water, the power was shut down and the entire facility was evacuated. Power was restored by 4 p.m. and as of Monday evening, the plant was back to full production, the fire department reported.
17 August 2008: Fire and explosion destroys sawmill
A fire and explosion that destroyed the sawmill at Moss Hardwood Inc. Sunday night has been ruled accidental. Scottsboro Fire Marshal Chuck Bryant said he, the state fire marshall and ATF agents made that determination during an investigation. Members of Highlands Ambulance Service, which is located approximately a half-mile from the mill, heard and felt a loud explosion around 10:45 p.m. Sunday. They reported the blaze to the fire department. Firefighters battled the fire for more than four hours. On Monday, employee Tim Sanders, who works maintenance at the mill, said he had been working on it over the weekend. Sanders had said he expected the fire to have been caused by a spark from torch bottles being used during his work. Investigators agreed with that assessment as well. "He was welding on Sunday," said Bryant. "There was an apparent spark that smoldered before eventually igniting." The sawmill, in some form, has been in business there for 40-50 years, Bryant said. "There was 40-50 years of sawdust buildup and oils and lubricants on the floor and machinery," he said. "We're all in consensus that that caused the fire." According to a report from the fire department, an estimated $550,000 worth of property was lost due to the fire.
13 August 2008: Torches caused Conshohocken fire; residents sue
As investigators confirmed yesterday that molten metal and sparks from a welding torch at the Stables at Millennium in Conshohocken ignited the eight-alarm blaze that destroyed 180 apartments Wednesday, a group of residents filed a lawsuit over the fire, seeking class-action status. County fire and law enforcement officials have ruled the fire accidental, and Conshohocken officials have supported developer J. Brian O'Neill, who they say followed every fire and building code the borough required for the Riverwalk at Millennium apartments. The welders operating the acetylene torches at the Stables construction site had left before the fire broke out, investigators said. The residents' lawsuit names O'Neill; property manager Bozzuto Management Co.; and the construction companies that worked at the site, alleging that safety measures were ignored and that the occupied buildings should have had firewalls and sprinkler systems that extended to the attics and roofs, where the fire caught and spread. "Using a 3,000-degree acetylene torch in a wood-frame building is like using matches in a barn full of hay . . .. Wood and flames do not mix," lawyer Robert Mongeluzzi, who represents the residents, said at a news conference yesterday. Mongeluzzi said the Riverwalk apartment buildings did not meet National Fire Prevention Association standards, which require attic sprinklers and firewalls that extend to the roof for buildings of five or more stories. Riverwalk has four stories with a garage on the first level. O'Neill said his lawyers would answer the suit but he declined to comment further. Welders were using oxyacetylene torches to remove steel supports for balconies that had been improperly installed, according to a statement yesterday from Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman. The welders stopped work at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday and returned to the site about an hour later to make sure there were no problems. They then closed up the site and left. About an hour later witnesses in a nearby building saw a small fire where the welders had been working. Fire officials received the call at 4:52 p.m. Ferman declined to discuss any specifics of the welding operations or other code issues raised in the lawsuit, but she said many factors contributed to the intensity of the fire. "This was an extraordinary confluence of circumstances," Ferman said. "If one piece had been different, this fire would not have started and spread the way it did." To prevent fires during welding, construction crews are supposed to protect combustible material within 35 feet of the welding site by wetting down surfaces or using fireproof covers, said Amy Beasley Spencer, a senior chemical engineer at the nonprofit National Fire Prevention Association. "All of these precautions are really well known," Beasley Spencer said. O'Neill said he knew that workers returned to the site to look for fires or other problems from the welding but could not speak more specifically about safety precautions taken at the site. When asked whether the welders were adequately trained, O'Neill said he was still looking into it. Cavan Construction of Aston, the company named in the suit as having performed the welding, did not return a call for comment yesterday. The other two construction companies named in the lawsuit - Merion Construction and L2I Construction - declined to comment. About 30 state, county and local officials toured the Riverwalk apartments yesterday and promised to help find money to replace and repair damaged fire equipment. Officials reiterated that the buildings were up to code but said they planned to review local building codes and fire-prevention requirements to see whether more restrictions were needed. "My eyes weren't lying to me when I saw how fast that erupted, how fast that spread," said Jim Matthews, chairman of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners. "I saw the lack of retardant . . . without the firewalls and it doesn't take a lot of brains to realize there could have been something done better or differently." He added, "Now, that does not mean it wasn't done according to code. This is really a question of addressing code in the future." Montgomery County Public Safety Director Tom Sullivan said the fire was difficult to fight because of its location along the river and because rush-hour traffic was backed up around Conshohocken when nearly 300 firefighters made their way to the scene. Some cars ran over hoses, Sullivan said, cutting off the water supply as firefighters tapped hydrants farther and farther from the scene.
12 August 2008: Apple fire caused $2 million in damage, fire dept. says
The fire that broke out Tuesday night at a building on Apple’s Cupertino campus caused approximately $2 million in damage, the Santa Clara County Fire Department said Friday. No one was hurt in Tuesday’s fire, which broke out at 10 p.m. in a building on Valley Green Drive across from Apple’s main campus on Infinite Loop. Smoke from the fire and water damage from putting out the blaze caused most of the damage, according to fire officials. It took fire crews about two and a half hours to extinguish the flames. The fire started accidentally, according to the Santa Clara County Fire Department. Fire captain Daron Pisciotta attributed the cause to construction work being done on the building, where workers were welding on the buidling’s roof. Initial reports of the fire said that it had broken out at a building housing Apple’s research-and-development efforts; however, Apple representatives confirmed that the building is not an R&D center.
01 August 2008: Gas canister explodes in school playground
A HIGHLY explosive gas cylinder caught fire in a school playground leading to the evacuation of more than 150 residents. The fire started when a gas canister ruptured as workmen were taking down an old iron fire escape at the back of Our Lady of Dolours School in Cirencester Street. Four fire engines and 20 firefighters rushed to the scene and a 200 metre exclusion zone was immediately set up in case the flammable gas exploded. Worried people from the homes and workplaces surrounding the school were evacuated to a nearby community centre for around four hours.
31 July 2008: Investigators seek cause of deadly explosion in Lincoln Co.
An unexpected reaction to a welding process might have caused the explosion that killed three men at a local mill Tuesday, a fiancee of one of the workers said. Terri Henrich of Tomahawk traveled to the Packaging Corp. of America mill in the town of Bradley after she found out there was an explosion. She said that she talked to some people at the mill, including human resources manager Ron Zimmerman, who told her that her fiance, Randy Hoegger, was performing maintenance on top of the tank in which the blast occurred. "The bolts on the tank had broken somehow," said Henrich, 56. "They didn't say what from." Zimmerman would not comment on the tank or the investigation, other than to say the tank was shut down. It is believed that something reacted with a flame or electrical arc to cause the explosion, Henrich said. Hoegger likely fell from the top of the tank, though the force of the explosion might have killed him instantly, Henrich said. "That's what I believe," she said. "That's what I need to believe, too." Tomahawk EMS transported Hoegger, 55, to Sacred Heart Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Donald Snyder, 46, of Merrill and Steve Voermans, 52, of Tomahawk were pronounced dead at the scene by Lincoln County Coroner Todd Wegner. Alex Loka, 20, of Tomahawk was injured in the explosion. He was transported by ambulance to Sacred Heart Hospital and later released. Zimmerman said mill employees were told to report to work Wednesday, and counselors from their Employee Assistance Program were available to those who wished to see them. The Lincoln County Sheriff's Department, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Tomahawk Fire Department are working with Packaging Corp. of America to determine what caused Tuesday's explosion. OSHA spokesman Brad Mitchell confirmed that an Appleton-based inspector was sent to the mill Tuesday and was at the scene Wednesday. The inspector planned to interview mill employees in an effort to determine why the storage tank exploded. If investigators find violations of federal safety and health regulations, OSHA would issue citations to Lake Forest, Ill.-based PCA, Mitchell said. Any citation would include proposed dollar penalties and abatements required by OSHA to correct any hazards that may exist. "If no violations are found, we would simply close the case," Mitchell said. By law, the administration has six months to complete the investigation, Mitchell said. Henrich said Hoegger always was cautious and would never put himself or other people in harm's way. "I doubt I'll ever understand why it happened," she said.....Full Story....
31 July 2008: Welding accident victim in critical condition
A man was transported to a Shreveport hospital after sustaining third degree burns in a Lufkin welding accident Thursday afternoon. According to Ted Lovett with the Lufkin Fire Department, Jose Ovta was using a cutting torch at Guy's Scrap Metal. Lovett says the torch had a leak, and there was a butane tank nearby. A fire quickly developed, and Ovta sustained third degree burns from the waist up. He was flown LSU Medical Center in Shreveport. As of Friday, Ovta was listed in critical condition. He is in the hospital's Burn Center
29 July 2008: Small fire closes Sarasota hospital entry
A small fire closed the main entrance of Sarasota Memorial Hospital's emergency room about 2 p.m. Monday. Hospital personnel and sprinklers contained the fire until firefighters extinguished it minutes later, a hospital spokeswoman said. No one was hurt. The fire was in a plumbing room outside the main emergency room entrance at 1700 S. Tamiami Trail. The cause was said to be a faulty valve on a welding torch. The hospital redirected emergency patients to another entry until about 4 p.m. The fire damaged three water pumps, causing low water pressure in the hospital's Critical Care Tower. Replacements were to be installed Monday night.
29 July 2008: Fire at Iowa City Procter & Gamble plant does $12,000 damage
Repair work on the roof of Iowa City’s Procter & Gamble plant led to a fire that caused $12,000 damage, according to a news release from the Iowa City Fire Department. Fire crews from Iowa City, Coralville and West Branch reported to the plant about 1:40 a.m. today at 2200 Lower Muscatine Road. Upon arrival, the fire departments met up with members of P&G’s emergency response team, which had initially knocked down the flames, which had started on the roof above the plant’s mixing room. The fire departments extinguished the fire in about 10 minutes. Firefighters then removed layers of roofing to check for extension of the fire and other hot spots before turning the scene over to the fire investigator at 2:30 a.m. Investigation revealed that the fire had started as a result of “hot work” being performed on the roof earlier in the day. This work involved welding metal supporting brackets under the plywood and rubber membrane roofing material. The welding had ignited the plywood which had smoldered for some time before spreading to the rubber membrane and roof tar. The damaged roof area measured approximately 55 square feet. The last fire unit left the scene at 2:53 AM.
29 July 2008: Chinese stadium damaged by fire
Firefighters took almost five hours to control blaze at construction site in Shandong. An indoor stadium under construction in China has been badly damaged by fire according to state press. The lotus-shaped facility in Ji’nan, Shandong was being built for the China National Games, which happen once every four years. More than 300 firefighters took almost five hours to put out the flames, which spread to a quarter of the roof. No casualties were reported. The fire is thought to have started when electric welding equipment set light to insulation material.
23 July 2008: Union Pacific to pay landmark $102-million settlement for fire
The move raises the stakes for those found responsible for starting forest fires, even accidentally. The railroad was blamed for a 2000 fire that burned 52,000 acres north of Sacramento. Union Pacific Railroad Co. has agreed to pay $102 million to the U.S. Forest Service for a devastating 2000 wildfire north of Sacramento in a landmark settlement that dramatically increases the stakes in punishing those responsible for setting forest fires. The settlement announced Tuesday marks the most money the U.S. Forest Service has ever received in a lawsuit and was undergirded by a first-of-its-kind ruling by a federal judge, officials said. U.S. District Judge Frank C. Damrell Jr. said Union Pacific was not only responsible for the cost of firefighting and lost timber, but also damage to young growth, soil, wildlife, habitat, recreational uses and views. Damrell also ruled that the forest was more valuable because it was protected against logging by Congress. Federal prosecutors said the settlement should send a message that the government is serious about prosecuting those who spark wildfires -- even by accident. "We want those individuals or corporations operating lawfully in our national forests to be on notice," said U.S. Atty. McGregor W. Scott. "We're paying attention and very focused about regaining, not just [fire] suppression costs, but lost resources to the country." Five Union Pacific workers were accused of neglecting safety precautions when using power tools to repair track on Aug. 17, 2000, in Plumas National Forest. By failing to use spark shields and clear the area of flammable material, smoldering bits of metal were able to ignite a blaze that consumed 52,000 acres within the Plumas and Lassen national forests over three weeks, federal officials said. A Union Pacific spokeswoman Tuesday said the settlement was reached to put the so-called Storrie fire behind them and it was agreed upon without any admission of liability on the part of its crew. She said the crew had extinguished the flames when the fire started, but a passing train reignited it
02 July 2008: Warehouse fire battled all day
Firefighters on Thursday afternoon were using heavy equipment to pull apart remnants of a large warehouse in Green Isle to get at smoldering fires. Firefighters from several communities had fought a blaze that started about 10 a.m. Wednesday in the Shamrock Storage building, which took up two city blocks. By Wednesday night most of the other departments were able to leave and the Green Isle department kept working on a less-intense fire. “They were there all night. Today the smoke is down a lot. It was very bad (Wednesday),” said City Clerk Paula Geisler. “I’m still seeing water trucks from other towns coming in today. It says a lot about small towns. A lot of people came to help.” The fire was believed to have started from warehouse workers who were cutting metal with a torch. Geisler said walls and ceiling pieces that fell in on the fire created small and smoldering fires all around the warehouse that firefighters were trying to get at Thursday. The warehouse is owned by Steve Cummings, who is not a local resident, Geisler said. The building was built in the 1950s and was a farm equipment manufacturing plant called Farm Hand. Cummings purchased it a few years ago. He stored a wide variety of things for businesses, including computer equipment, office furniture, DVDs, even sandbags. It has been erroneously reported that semis were stored in the warehouse. Geisler said there were often semi trailers backed up to the warehouse but none were stored inside it
02 July 2008: Hundreds flee blast threat as inferno engulfs garage
Up to 200 people were evacuated from their homes in an Angus town as a huge fire engulfed a garage containing a gas cylinder yesterday. About 30 firefighters battled 30ft-high flames at Glengate Garage in Kirriemuir. It is thought to have been started by a welding accident just after 1pm as mechanics worked on a Ford Transit. Onlookers gathered outside an exclusion zone as crews tackled the fire and the threat of an explosion. Tayside Fire and Rescue station manager Graeme Brown said later: “The whole building is totally destroyed. It’s just a shell. “We’ve had to move our appliances to elsewhere in Kirriemuir because the station is right next door. “It was very quick into the incident that the roof collapsed. And a number of walls collapsed. “It was a very severe blaze. The building was completely engulfed with fire.
01 July 2008: Historic Flour Mill Gutted By Fire, Not Considered Suspicious
It was a massive fire that prompted the largest evacuation in recent memory in York Region, and a day later the rubble of a historic flour mill continued to smolder. Firefighters were at the scene well into the morning at the Hayhoe Flour Mill near Islington Ave. and Langstaff Rd. in Woodbridge hosing down the smoking debris. It was just after 7pm Tuesday when the blaze broke out, sending a welding crew inside at the time rushing outside to safety. Two firefighters suffered smoke inhalation fighting the enormous flames and giant plumes of black smoke. As the 180-year-old structure weakened, one of its towers came toppling down. In all more than 40 firefighters were needed to battle the blaze. Crews managed to knock down the majority of the fire and on Wednesday were watching out for flare-ups and hotspots. "We had significant dust explosions, which surprises people when you tell them flour does burn. But it does and it causes significant explosions when you expose it to open flames," noted Greg Olsen of the Ontario Fire Marshal's office.
30 June 2008: Upstate NY brewery resumes bottling after fire
Bottling resumed Monday at an upstate New York brewery damaged by a serious fire a month ago. F.X. Matt Brewing Co. President Nicholas Matt said there were some machinery problems — only one of two packing machines was working. "Some of the equipment is not running at top efficiency, but we are running," Matt said.Normally, workers would use spare parts to repair machinery, but those spare parts were lost in the fire, and as a result workers have had to improvise, Matt said. The goal was to run 1,500 cases every hour, but officials expected to process only between 1,000 and 1,100 cases an hour. The brewery, which opened in 1888, is bottling its 12-pack pale ale, which is the brewery's best seller, Matt said. The blaze started accidentally on May 29 when two employees working on a welding project inadvertently melted a plastic conveyor belt. The fire caused $10 million in damages to the company's bottling operations — although it did not affect Matt's brewing facility. The company resuming brewing beer just five days after the fire, sending its suds to High Falls Brewing Co. in Rochester to be bottled and canned. Matt said the weeks of managing inventories to keep beer on store shelves came at a time that normally means big business. "Make no mistake we missed probably the best month of the year," Matt said. "However long it took was too long."
27 June 2008: Fire strikes Metropolitan Works
A fire at London Metropolitan University’s new Creative Industries Centre on Commercial Road has caused ‘substantial damage’ and major disruption. Everyone was safely evacuated from the site, following the blaze at the London Metropolitan Works site and neighbouring London Metropolitan University buildings on Wednesday, although damage caused by the flames and sprinkler system mean that staff will be unable to return to Commercial Road for several weeks. Metropolitan Works’ employee Vicky Creevey was among those evacuated from the building. She says, ‘I saw smoke and big flames coming from the building itself, but fire engines arrived very quickly, which minimised the extent of the damage.’ It is thought that the fire started on the building site of the new Creative Industries Centre, which was nearing completion. However, Metropolitan Works is yet to receive an official report on the cause of the blaze. Creevey says, ‘It was awful to see everybody’s hard work go up in flames – particularly as the building was almost finished. But we are determined to come back bigger and stronger than before – and hopefully we will soon begin a programme for the rebuild.’ Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Works team is being rehoused in temporary office space on Whitechapel High Street at their nearby jewellery manufacturing centre. Despite this considerable setback the centre is remaining open, but offering only limited services, including consultation, CAD work, 3D scanning, 3D printing, laser welding and perfatory rapid prototyping in resin.
24 June 2008: Lewisburg Sawmill Destroyed in Fire
The Miller Sawmill has been manufacturing pallets from their mill since 2002, but in less than an hour, the mill went from a place of business, to a puff of smoke; billows of smoke, mounds of rubble, and still inextinguishable flames. That's all that's left of the sawmill. However, fire officials say it could have been far worse. "We had major potential for a serious fire that could have gotten away from us with sawdust and got into the woods or got into the logs," says Lewisburg Rural Fire Department Deputy Chief, Eddie Schweers. Mill Owner, Marvin Miller declined to be on camera, but says the fire began while some of his workers were in the workshop welding and they noticed a fire in the engine room. They tried putting out the fire with a 450 pound fire extinguisher, but the fire persisted. It eventually spread and destroyed the building and about three acres of land in all. "We had several propane bottles cooking off. We had a several gallon diesel tank that had fire around it, but it didn't catch on fire. Luckily, we got the fire before it could get to the diesel tank," continues Schweers. Miller estimates the fire will cost him nearly $250,000 in damages from equipment.
21 June 2008: Ex-worker: Docks death was preventable
The Saturday accident that killed a worker at the Alabama state docks in Mobile represented the second time within a year that a worker there was injured after passing out in a low oxygen environment, according to fire-rescue officials and the man injured in the August 2007 incident. Clarence Coleman said he was nearly killed in the 2007 incident when a lack of oxygen caused him to fall from a ladder. He remains out of work because of his injuries. He said Monday that he believes more safety precautions should have been put in place after he lost consciousness due to lack of oxygen. "They were supposed to (put safety precautions in place) but they didn't," Coleman said.....Full Story....
19 June 2008: Entertainment Icon Burnt by Fire
An entertainment Icon in Pocatello caught fire late this afternoon. That fire was caused by someone welding near the structure when a spark flew off and landed in the bushes in front of the theatre. The Pocatello Valley Fire Department received the call around 4:15 and arrived at the scene shortly after. That fire was quickly contained because it was merely in the surrounding brush. No one was injured and there was never any real threat to surrounding houses. The only safety measure that will be taken is the power company will take down a power pole nearby that was burnt extensively in order to keep it from falling. That establishment was already being demolished so there should be no real cost to the owners.
18 June 2008: I-84 bridge work sparks blaze
concrete cutter sparked a small fire Wednesday afternoon in the Interstate 84 median on the east side of exit 210 near the Oregon Department of Transportation bridge construction project in Pendleton. But, said Pendleton Fire Chief John Fowler, the employee working the concrete cutter was not an ODOT employee. "At the time of the fire, it was a contractor doing bridge work," he said. As a precaution, the workers always wet down the soil near where they are working, Fowler said. The worker was cutting concrete in the westbound lane, on the north side of the freeway. "The individual indicated he had a problem with the saw," Fowler said. The man had his head down as he was working. "The next thing, he looked up and the fire was going," Fowler said. "He tried to put it out with an extinguisher and that had no effect and away it went." The small blaze burned juniper bushes and grass from the top of the hill down below the overpass under the bridge construction. Fowler said his department received the call at about 2:20 p.m. The city responded with three engines and nine firefighters who attacked the flames from above and below. Below the freeway, firefighters sprayed water with a hose from an engine and shoveled dirt to stop the blaze near the east sidewalk on Southeast Third Drive (also called the viaduct). They quickly extinguished the blaze and were headed to mop-up mode within half an hour. Firefighters, ODOT and Pendleton Police redirected traffic, closing a portion of Interstate 84 where the fire burned. They diverted eastbound drivers through exit 210 - down the exit and back up the on-ramp - to avoid the bridge and fire engines just to the east. Firefighters reopened the freeway around 3:50 p.m.
17 June 2008: Little Rail Blaze Spews Smoke in Centralia
Riverside Fire Authority crews extinguished a small but intense blaze just before noon Tuesday at a caboose parked at loading dock in a switching yard north of the train depot in Centralia. Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway workers had been doing some welding or cutting on the surplus caboose before the fire broke out, although the fire is still under investigation. Assistant Fire Chief Richard Mack said the railroad ties are flammable because of preservatives used in the wood. The caboose was only scorched, and most of the damage was limited to the loading dock. Smoke from the blaze was visible throughout Centralia’s main drag and drew clusters of onlookers out of shops in the 500 block of North Tower Avenue. Crews responded to the fire at 11:31 a.m. and it was extinguished by about 11:50.
11 June 2008: Firefighters Waiting for Warehouse to Collapse
PALMVIEW - A warehouse in Palmview is still burning. Black smoke is billowing from the building. The Palmview fire chief says it's the worst structure fire his station has ever fought. "Everyone tried to evacuate as soon as they could," says one worker at the Rio Queen Citrus packing shed. The fire started around 1:15 p.m. Investigators say it was most likely an accident. We're told a spark from a welding machine ignited the blaze, which quickly spread. The flames engulfed the building. Just a few dozen people were inside the building, since it's the off-season for the company. Only one injury has been reported so far. A welder is believed to be suffering from second-degree burns. But he refused medical attention. Hidalgo County Fire Marshal Wesley Bradley also says packing materials and wooden pallets inside the building are fueling the flames. Butane tanks inside and outside the warehouse also concerned fire crews. The smaller Butane tanks could be heard popping and letting out pressure. The larger ones were kept cool throughout the most intense moments of the fire. Firefighters tell us the packing shed is a total loss. They're waiting for the warehouse to collapse. Once it does, crews will be able to completely put out the fire. Meanwhile, a total of 70 firefighters have been working to contain the blaze. A special response team is at the scene to make sure all firefighters stay hydrated and in good shape. EMS crews are also there.
10 June 2008: Spark starts fire in theatre workshop
A FIRE at the props workshop of a Wood Green theatre academy was started by a rogue welding spark that jumped three metres and ignited wooden planks. The blaze at The Mountview Scenic Workshop, part of The Chocolate Factory arts complex in Clarendon Road, was tackled by 20 firefighters and four fire engines from Hornsey and Tottenham fire stations last Tuesday. Tim Staffel, 60, head of the construction department at Mountview Technical Theatre, and his colleague, construction tutor Laura Monk were in the workshop at the time. He said: "We rang the fire brigade instantly and then we attacked the fire with four extinguishers, but when the smoke came that was the time to get out. "They were here quickly and the whole thing was contained. It was more of a spectator sport than anything else." The blaze started at 3.30pm and had been put out an hour later. "It was one of those rogue incidents where the spark must have jumped three metres to where the ignition point was," said Mr Staffel. Watch manager Roy Keightley, of Hornsey fire station, who attended, said: "We could see the smoke as we pulled in but the flames weren't that great as the sprinkler system contained it." The fire did not affect any of the other creative businesses within the complex but about 200 people had to be evacuated. Ninety-five per cent of the single-storey workshop was saved and only wooden planks were lost in the blaze, with a fridge also damaged by water. The workshop makes props for the Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts.
05 June 2008: Fire Strikes Landmark Swedish Courthouse
Fire struck the historic main Stockholm courthouse early Thursday, severely damaging part of the third floor, officials say. As many as 70 firefighters responded after the 2 a.m. alarm was sounded and managed to control the blaze within three hours, the Swedish news agency TT reported. There were no reported injuries and the cause had not been determined. The architectural landmark, completed in 1915, normally serves as the primary base of operations for the Stockholm District Court though some court operations had been moved to other locations during a renovation. When we got here, there was a full blown fire, fireman Magnus Wallin told TT. Five- to 10-meter high flames were extending from the windows. It looked bad and the fire spread to the attic. Wallin estimated that the entire third floor of the left wing was destroyed
01 June 2008: Officials: Roofers started Universal Studios fire
Workers using a blowtorch on the roof of a movie set building facade at Universal Studios accidentally set a huge fire that swept through the back lot, fire officials said Monday. Workers had been using a blowtorch to heat asphalt shingles to apply to the roof early Sunday, said Los Angeles County Fire Chief Michael Freeman. They finished about 3 a.m. and followed policy of standing watch for one hour, then left for a break, he said. A security guard spotted the fire and reported it at 4:43 a.m., Freeman said. The fire erupted on a streetscape featuring New York brownstone facades at the 400-acre property. It then destroyed a King Kong attraction, the courthouse square from "Back to the Future" and a streetscape featured in "Spider-Man 2" and "Transformers." The blaze also gutted a building housing 40,000 to 50,000 videos, but Universal Studios President and Chief Operating Officer Ron Meyer said there were duplicates of everything. The theme park reopened Monday, giving tourists a view of real-life disaster in the make-believe world of Hollywood. The smell of smoke hung in the air as guests streamed in when the gates reopened and tourists on the park's tram ride applauded firefighters as they drove past. At least a dozen fire trucks remained on the lot as smoke rose from thick, twisted piles of girders.....Full Story....
30 May 2008: Welding might have sparked blaze
Firefighters used poles to pull apart cardboard inside the smoldering F.X. Matt Brewing Co. processing building Friday as they sought indications that a welding project might be responsible for sparking Thursday evening’s fire. The city fire department’s damage estimate: At least $10 million. “This is probably one of the greatest dollar losses in the history of the city,” Utica Fire Chief Russell Brooks said. Firefighters continued to tackle hot spots Friday in the ruins to prevent the blaze from rekindling. City Fire Marshal Raymond Beck said two employees had just finished welding some brackets to machinery on the second floor when one of them noticed flames late Thursday afternoon. The workers unsuccessfully attempted to put out the fire, which was called in at 5:03 p.m. The building did not have fire sprinklers, but alarms had been installed recently. While investigators attempt to verify the workers’ account of how the fire started, Beck said they will continue to rule out other causes. Nothing has been ruled out at this point, he said. Given the scope of the damage, investigators with the state Office of Fire Prevention and Control have been called in with a K-9 unit to assist in determining the cause, Beck said.....Full Story....
27 May 2008: Ramsey factory fire accidental
An investigation into a factory fire at Bury Lane Industrial, in Ramsey, has shown it started accidentally. The fire, which has destroyed the interior of a factory unit used by K2B Express Couriers and Logistics, was caused by a grinding process which generated heat and sparks. May 27, 3:30pm: One crew is still at the scene of a factory fire in Bury Lane Industrial Estate, in Ramsey. When crews arrived at the building, which was being used by K2B Express Couriers and Logistics, at 12:14pm today (Tuesday) it was well alight. They were advised that a number of propane cylinders were involved in the fire, along with three vehicles, paints and aerosols. Workers at the factory had already evacuated and the decision was made to evacuate nearby homes and businesses as a safety precaution. The fire, which has now been completely extinguished, destroyed all of the building interior and its contents. Firefighters tackled the fire using the turntable ladder and three jets. One man was treated by paramedics for smoke inhalation. Station Manager for Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service, Ronnie Booth, said: "Crews did an excellent job in containing the fire and in evacuating those nearby. "A garage, and also a number of homes and vehicles are situated in close proximity and firefighters managed to prevent the fire spreading to these buildings and vehicles, while keeping the cylinders inside cool." A fire investigation will take place later today, which will establish the cause of the fire.
27 May 2008: 30 people die in series of blasts followed by blaze in central Iran
TEHRAN (RTRS): Thirty people died in a series of blasts followed by a blaze that engulfed a pharmaceutical plant in central Iran on Sunday when a container of chemicals caught fire, the official IRNA news agency said. Another 38 people were injured at the factory near the city of Arak, 290 kms (180 miles) southwest of the capital Tehran, many of them critically, IRNA said. A container holding 60,000 litres of inflammable products exploded during welding work nearby and the fire quickly spread to other parts of the plant, it said, citing eye witnesses. There was extensive damage within 500 metres of the explosion, with many vehicles destroyed and the roofs of buildings collapsing. Many of the dead were burnt beyond recognition and 23 of the injured suffered burns of 70 percent or more, the witnesses said. Provincial officials said most of the factory had been destroyed but that the fire had been brought under control, the Mehr News Agency said.
20 May 2008: Firefighters Put Out Fire In Walls Of 45 White Street
A fire broke out in the basement of 45 White Street, a newly converted 18-unit rental building, just before noon on Tuesday, May 20, drawing a quick response from nine firefighting units. “I smelled smoke, but the fire alarms didn’t go off,” said Lana Kim, who was staying in her boyfriend’s third-floor apartment. “When I called the management company [E.J. Realty], they said there was a fire but it was under control. Then the fire department came and I decided to leave.” Deputy Chief Paul Cresci said the fire spread from the basement up through the first floor wall. Four firefighters suffered minor injuries in the incident. Cresci said the precise cause of the blaze remains under investigation, but one man in the building when the fire started said it was caused by welding in the basement. Yitz Weiss was installing sprinkler systems on the second floor when he smelled smoke. “I went down to the basement, where welders were installing diamond plate for the sidewalk,” Weiss said. “One of the sparks from the welding must have shot away, because when I went down there one of the metal beams was on fire, red hot.” Upon arrival, firefighters checked all the apartments in the building before isolating the blaze inside a first floor wall. Using axes, saws and poles they hacked their way through the wall and the first-floor ceiling, exposing the fire and then drenching it with their hose. A ground-floor apartment and a second-floor apartment were badly damaged. The fire marked the second safety incident at the building in recent months. In March a man installing windowsills was badly injured when he fell from a ladder onto the sidewalk shed below. In April the Department of Buildings issued the building violations for elevator safety and work without a permit.
20 May 2008: Blaze breaks out at Berlin Philharmonie
A fire broke out today at the home of the Berlin Philharmonic orchestra, sending smoke pouring from the roof as firefighters and musicians rushed to save instruments. The blaze started just after lunchtime as a concert audience was leaving the Philharmonie. About 300 people were evacuated without any panic. "We don't believe anyone is in danger as the fire appears to be contained to the roof," said Marco Tren, a Berlin fire brigade spokesman.Musicians were allowed into the building with firefighters to remove instruments in their lockers. Peter Riegelbauer, a senior orchestra member, said about 50 "priceless" instruments - most of them strings - had been removed in total, and said there was no risk of damage to any others. Heavier instruments such as concert pianos were housed below the main concert hall, and were not in immediate danger. Hundreds of people had been due to start rehearsing this afternoon for a performance of Hector Berlioz's Te Deum as part of a series of weekend concerts being directed by Claudio Abbado, the orchestra's former chief conductor. "Thank God the fire broke out earlier," said Pamela Rosenberg, the orchestra's general manager. She said the Philharmonic's archive of music, located in the basement, was not at risk. A senior fire officer, Karsten Goewecke, said no damage had been caused to the building's interior by water used to douse the flames. He said firefighters were trying to use more foam than water to minimise potential damage. Police said they were investigating whether welding work carried out on the tin roof earlier that day had caused the blaze. The Philharmonie, which was designed by Hans Scharoun and completed in 1963, is regarded by many as one of the world's finest concert halls, celebrated for its astonishing acoustics.
19 May 2008: Flash fire causes mass evacuation
HUNDREDS of workers and residents were evacuated yesterday after a freak accident at a Rockhampton factory left a man with significant burns. Police drew an exclusion zone around Pierce Engineering in Quinn Street, Kawana, amid fears there could be a major explosion. Officers ordered people to leave about 40 buildings and told them they would not be allowed back for 24 hours. Firefighters had to keep hoses trained on an 80kg acetylene cylinder that had caught fire. The 24-hour evacuation was downgraded when the fire in the cylinder was extinguished late in the afternoon and residents were allowed back into their homes. The drama started mid-morning when boilermaker Brett Ladinski was changing an acetylene bottle that erupted in flames ignited by a stray welding spark. The man, in his early 30s, suffered severe burns to his hands and arms below the elbow. Colleagues leapt to his aid, applying cold running water and ice to his arms before an ambulance arrived. Mr Ladinski was taken to Rockhampton Hospital and was later transferred to the Mater for more specialised treatment. Pierce Engineering supervisor Pat Jones said in 30 years as a boilermaker he had seen only three similar accidents. "It was a freak. We run a very tight ship in there with safety," he said. "There was no explosion but a flash fire when he was changing an empty bottle. "Brett's burns were bad, but he was in good spirits." He said the company's evacuation procedure cleared the factory before firefighters arrived. Four fire trucks attended and officers wearing breathing apparatus located the cylinder. Queensland Fire and Rescue Service area director Eddie Lacko co-ordinated the response in Quinn Street and ordered the exclusion zone. "There was a continuing risk of explosion," he said. "Acetylene will continue to burn in a cylinder and does not need air to be volatile." He said firefighters would douse the cylinder around the clock to eliminate all risks. If the bottle had exploded, it would have destroyed half the factory, he said. "We had full co-operation from all the companies involved and the police did a fantastic job." The evacuated area bordered Farm Street, Alexandra Street, Chapel Street and Maloney Street and included the main Queensland Rail line through Kawana. Staff were expected to return to Pierce Engineering later today
17 May 2008: Search for clues ongoing in fatal Falmouth fire
NORTH FALMOUTH — Police have still not released the name of a construction worker who died Saturday following a house fire in the Fiddlers Cove neighborhood. The man, who worked for Green Mountain Insulation of White River Junction, Vt., was trapped in the attic of the home at 28 Deer Run Lane after the fire broke out about 2:15 p.m., fire officials said. Emergency workers rescued the man from the attic. He was taken by ambulance to Falmouth Hospital, where he was pronounced dead later in the afternoon. Officials at Green Mountain Insulation did not return calls for comment. Two other company workers and four firefighters were also injured in the fire, according to Falmouth Deputy Fire Chief Mark Sullivan. They were treated at Falmouth Hospital and later released. The Falmouth Fire Department, police department and the state fire marshal's office are still investigating the cause of the blaze. Investigators believe the fire was accidental, state Fire Marshal Stephen Coan said yesterday. Sullivan said the fire may have been related to the foam insulation being sprayed into the attic. Workers from the insulation company M. Duffany Builders Inc., the building contractor and insurance inspectors gathered yesterday outside the house to determine the extent of the damage. The North Falmouth home has been under renovation since September, said Michael Duffany of Duffany Builders.
17 May 2008: Broken Gas Line Sparks Large Fire
NOBLESVILLE, Ind. -- A broken gas line sparked a large fire that destroyed a facility that belongs to a highway construction contractor Saturday morning. The blaze that gutted Shelly and Sands Inc. stemmed from a gas leak at Martin Marietta Aggregates, which is nearby, fire officials said. Workers were drilling at Martin Marietta on River Road north of 146th Street just after 8 a.m. when the gas line was severed, a Martin Marietta employee told the Noblesville Fire Department. Authorities said that there were no utility markings in the area in which the workers were drilling. TThe leak fueled a fire in a storage building that also spread to several cars. Firefighters worked for about two hours to get control of the blaze. No one was injured, but an estimated $1 million in damage was done to the storage building, authorities said.
16 May 2008: Twelve killed in a mall fire in eastern India
New Delhi - At least 12 people were killed and 23 were injured when a fire broke out in a shopping mall in India's eastern state of West Bengal, news reports said Saturday. The blaze in the mall in Sodepur town, 20 kilometres north of state capital Kolkata, was extinguished a few hours after it erupted on Friday night, the Indian Express daily reported. Senior police officials and witnesses said the victims, which included two women, had died due to suffocation. 'None of the bodies bore serious burns and it was obvious that most of the deaths occurred due to suffocation,' Kaushik Chatterjee, a local involved in rescue operations told the newspaper. Meanwhile, the IANS news agency reported that welding work at an establishment inside the mall was suspected of causing the fire. Doctors at a state-run hospital said that of the 23 injured, 18 were given first-aid while five critically wounded were still being treated. According to the IANS, the number of casualties rose as the facility did not have any fire-fighting system and also because some people pulled down the shutters believing that would help contain the blaze.
15 May 2008: Peru: Lima nightclub destroyed by fire
A popular Lima nightclub located on the 15th block of Arequipa Avenue caught fire Thursday afternoon. Firefighters were able to control the flames and put out the blaze in less than two hours. According to news reports on Canal N, the fire did not cause any casualties or injuries. Firefighters stated that the fire broke out as a four-man welding crew was working on the building's roof. It was reported that the nightclub's ceiling was made of highly flammable material. "At this time, the area where the accident took place is out of danger and there isn't any risk (of entering) the establishment or other places around the nightclub," firefighters said. It took almost 50 firefighters from four different stations to control the blaze. The country's national police was also present. The people that were evacuated from their homes and business establishments by Serenazgo (auxiliary police) have been allowed to return to their residences and work places. Traffic, which had been blocked from the 14th to the 17th block of Arequipa Avenue has also returned to normal. According to neighbors, the fire may have been set intentionally. The nightclub was abandoned two months ago and moved to Barranco. Wilfredo Quispe, one of the welders working on the roof at the time of the fire stated that there was a "sudden spark" that started the fire. Fire commander Mario Casaretto explained that when firefighters arrived to the scene the fire had been burning for some time.
14 May 2008: Firemen tackle rooftop blaze
DUBAI // Firemen tackled a blaze on the roof of a 46-storey tower being built in Dubai Media City (DMC) yesterday. The alarm was raised at 2.12pm and 55 firemen rushed to the scene. No one was reported injured in the blaze, which sent plumes of smoke billowing across the city. “At the moment there are no injuries, and we are working with all the authorities to contain the fire,” said Mohammed Almulla, the executive director of DMC, as firemen worked to contain the blaze. The fire broke out on top of the unfinished Al Salam tower, in the area of DMC known as TECOM Site B, next to Sheikh Zayed Road. Fire crews climbed to the roof of the building, where construction materials were ablaze. Smoke from the building could be seen from as far away as the Palm Jebel Ali. “The smoke is very heavy because of the construction materials on top of the building,” said Major Hussain Maroud al Rahoomi, of Dubai Civil Defence. Dubai Rescue Police arrived at the fire at about 4pm and entered the burning building, although officials denied there was anybody trapped inside. A line of ambulances waited at the foot of the tower in case of casualties. The fire was out by 7.30pm, a Civil Defence spokesman said. Dubai Civil Defence was seen working alongside officials from Dubai Holding – TECOM’s parent company – who held the building’s floor plans, while a roll-call was taken among the workers. A subcontractor operating in the tower said it was impossible to tell the number of men working inside because there were so many different companies involved in the project. An official for the mobile telecoms company, Du, said the company had intended to rent 26 floors of the Al Salam building. “This has really messed up our plans,” he said. A statement from Du issued later said: “The building was still under construction and nothing has been handed over to Du as yet. This being the case the question of operational delay doesn’t arise at all.” At one point, police pushed back hundreds of onlookers and labourers who were evacuated, fearing that the building might collapse. An official investigation into the cause of the fire will be carried out. There were unsubstantiated reports that it may have started when workers were welding on the top floor. Hundreds of labourers working on neighbouring buildings were evacuated as a safety precaution. A site official from a nearby tower said he had to evacuate about 500 men. “We didn’t want to take any risks with the safety of our workers. It’s very dangerous, because there’s the risk of falling debris.” Mr Almulla said it was premature to estimate the extent of the damage to the building, which was due for completion at the end of this year. “The most important thing is the safety of the workers, but we’re almost certain there are no injuries. We believe this fire was on the roof of the building only,” he said. “The owner has been at the site and was concerned about the workers. He left once he’d established there were no casualties.” A statement from TECOM Investments, which owns and operates DMC, read: “We are currently working very closely with the local authorities to investigate the incident, determine its causes, exact location and injuries. So far no casualties have been reported. “We are also in contact with the owner of the building and its contracting company to further assess the situation. Our key concern at this point is to ensure that there have been no injuries or casualties on site.”
13 May 2008: Enderlin business hit by second fire
ENDERLIN, N.D. –For the second time in a month, Dwight Fraedrich watched his business go up in flames. At 2:30 p.m. Monday, fire crews arrived at Fraedrich Transport Inc. on the north side of Enderlin to find about a 150-yard stretch of railroad ties ablaze.More than a dozen fire trucks from several communities responded to the scene, where thick, black smoke curled into the air and could be seen 15 miles away. When asked how they planned to fight the fire, Enderlin Fire Chief Duane Skramstad said, “You don’t. “You can’t save that stuff (the railroad ties),” he said. Surrounded by piles of wood and flashing truck lights, firefighters kept an eye on the orange blaze to make sure it didn’t spread. They also set up a sprinkler to protect nearby trees and hosed down an adjacent field. Officials don’t know the cause or cost of the fire, Skramstad said. Fraedrich, who watched the blaze from his pickup truck, thinks a spark from a grinder hit the ties and started the fire. The dry material combined with wind caused it to spread, he said. The business grinds up railroad ties and other wood waste into wood chips, said Fraedrich, of Fargo, who started the business in 2004. Burned equipment from his business’s last fire sat less than 100 yards away from the new blaze. On April 8, fire destroyed his shop and equipment. His former 60-by-90-foot metal building was used to store two wood grinders and other equipment during the winter. The April fire destroyed the grinders, two front-end loaders, a service truck and a skidsteer. Fraedrich said at the time that insurance would cover the damage, which he estimated at $1.25 million to $1.5 million. On Monday, Fraedrich said he received the last of his replacement equipment last week. A contractor is scheduled to arrive the first week in June to begin rebuilding the business. Fraedrich said his father’s ongoing recovery from a recent open heart surgery puts the fires into perspective for him.
11 May 2008: Contractor Denies Responsibility for Fire
The contractor handling the renovation of the Georgetown public library has denied any role in last week's fire, saying it began in an area where the library's own maintenance crew was working. D.C. Fire Chief Dennis L. Rubin said last week that the fire was probably started by a heat gun as a construction worker removed paint and other material from a window on the second floor of the 72-year-old Georgian-style mansion, at Wisconsin Avenue and R Street NW. Hyattsville-based Dynamic Corp., which was awarded the renovation contract, issued a news release yesterday stating that the company conducted its own investigation and found that its workers and subcontractors were using wire brushes, not heat guns, on the windows when the fire started. The company said it believes that a D.C library staff member was working on the mechanical system in the attic and that the fire started there. "We were working on windows on the opposite side of the building," Dynamic Corp. President Ebenezer Adewunmi said. Alan Etter, spokesman for the D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department, said the fire probably started on the library's second floor, not in the attic. It began about noon April 30 and quickly spread, drawing about 200 fire personnel. City officials said it will cost as much as $20 million to rebuild the library, which was in the midst of a redesign and renovation. The work includes the restoration of exterior doors and windows, stone masonry and ornamental railings and grates. Library spokeswoman Monica Lewis said yesterday that she could not confirm whether a library employee was working in the attic when the fire started. "I don't know if somebody was working on the mechanical system at that time," she said. Etter reiterated yesterday that a preliminary report from the fire department says the blaze was started by a heat gun. "We know an open heat source caused the fire," Etter said. "Whoever was up there, I don't know." Investigators believe that somebody tried unsuccessfully to extinguish the flames, Etter said. The fire burned for up to 15 minutes before 911 was called. Rubin did not specifically blame Dynamic Corp. in last week's statement on the cause, but the company said it felt unfairly targeted. Its news release stated that the firm is committed to safety and will continue to cooperate with authorities investigating the blaze.
10 May 2008: Welding might have sparked blaze
UTICA — A welding project sparked Thursday's multimillion dollar blaze at F.X. Matt Brewing Co., officials said Tuesday. Chief Fire Marshal Raymond Beck said the welding being done on the bottling facility's second floor created so much heat that it melted a nearby conveyor belt. As the conveyor continued to melt and burn, however, it did not create any visible flames, Beck said. The burning belt then caused cardboard and plastic six-pack bindings to catch fire roughly 10 feet from the welding area, he said. Officials confirmed the results at a morning news conference at City Hall. Fire officials said the type of welding the workers were using did not create any sparks. Fire investigators previously said two brewery workers were welding machinery on the second floor shortly before 5 p.m. when the first flames were noticed. The two attempted to extinguish the fire, but the flames soon spread beyond their control. Beck estimated the fire caused more than $10 million in damage. Firefighters from across the region battled the blaze for more than 15 hours until it was declared under control Friday morning. The roof had collapsed onto the third floor, and firefighters spent the rest of the day drowning any stubborn hot spots that threatened the unstable structure. The brewery's canning operation was destroyed for an undetermined amount of time, while the bottling operation was somewhat slowed. The facility can still brew and draft beer.
06 May 2008: Blaze apparently started by a roofing contractor
LAWRENCE -- A contractor putting the finishing touches on a new roof accidentally sparked a fire yesterday that destroyed both the roof and second floor of a home on Allegheny Avenue, fire and police officials said. The blaze, which broke out shortly before 4 p.m., sent flames shooting skyward and smoke billowing across nearby Business Route 1. At least one pet bird was killed, but several other pets -- more birds, some turtles and three or four dogs -- were rescued from the burning home and there were no injuries to firefighters, the contractor or the resident, officials said. The contractor, identified by officials as an employee of ENN Roof ing of South Olden Avenue in Hamilton, was using a small torch to heat up material to seal around a vent near the peak of the new roof when he ignited insulation inside the attic of the two-story home. Officials said township inspectors are investigating why ENN Roofing did not have the permits required to do such work. The contractor, whose name was not available, tried to douse the growing blaze using first a portable fire extinguisher, and then the home's garden hose, officials said. They estimated the man may have spent as much as 10 minutes trying to fight the flames on his own be fore resident Laurie Galante, realizing the blaze was out of control, called 911.
05 May 2008: Welding Rig Sparks Polk County Fire
A two-alarm fire was under control in less than hour today and did not threaten a nearby Eagle Lake elementary school, Polk County Fire Rescue officials said. The blaze in the metal building at 129 Ninth St. started when the property owner was welding and burning debris fell on wooden pallets, fire rescue spokeswoman Heather McClanahan said. Explosions were heard inside the commercial metal structure but no injuries have been reported. The fire never reached Snively Elementary School, located about block east from the metal structure that fire officials described as a pole barn. The fire put an adjacent home, a nearby parked tractor-trailer with its cargo in danger, but crews managed to contain the blaze and protect the adjacent property. About 30 firefighters were on the scene from the Auburndale and Winter Haven fire departments.
04 May 2008: Firefighters battle blaze at power plant
SALEM — Sparks from a welding torch started two small fires inside a boiler at the Salem Harbor Station yesterday. Firefighters responded to the Fort Avenue power plant shortly after noon. The boiler was not damaged and was not on at the time of the fire, minimizing the potential for danger. Salem fire Deputy Chief Brian Harrington said sparks from the welding ignited a nearby plank on a platform that was about three stories above the ground. An ember from that fire fell to the ground and started a second fire in some construction debris, Harrington said. Firefighters knocked down the debris fire quickly but getting to the initial fire was more taxing. Harrington said a winding, metal staircase made it tricky to bring a fire hose all the way up to the burning plank. Communicating with firefighters was also tricky because the boiler is encapsulated by steel, Harrington said. "There was so much steel it was interfering with the radios," he added. It was unclear which of the power plant's four burners was the location of the fire. Two of the power plant's four boilers recently began running again following a Nov. 6 steam-pipe accident that killed three Dominion workers. Two of the plant's three coal-burning boilers are back in service. Unit 3, which had the steam pipe accident, is not running yet. The plant's fourth and largest power generator, an oil-burning boiler, is expected to return to service in a few weeks, a company spokesman said.
02 May 2008: Hotel fire sends four to hospital
They had the blaze under control within 30 minutes. Booth said a contractor was replacing breakers in the basement electrical room but had not turned the power off. An asthmatic man in his mid-30s suffered smoke inhalation and was taken to University hospital in serious but stable condition yesterday following an explosive fire at a north-side hotel.
19 April 2008: Fire damages Kaweah Delta roof An estimated $4,000 in damages done to new north addition
Fire broke out Saturday night on the roof of the new north addition of Kaweah Delta Medical Center — but was quickly extinguished by the Visalia Fire Department, firefighters and hospital management reported Sunday. "Workers were on the roof at the time and tried to put out the fire themselves before calling us," said Eric Bush, a fire captain for the Visalia Fire Department."....Full Story....
16 April 2008: Contractor Injured by Electrical Line
A construction worker was hospitalized with burns Wednesday after his equipment struck underground electric line near 19th Street and Franklin Street in downtown Oakland. Two workers were excavating in front of 1950 Franklin Street to rehabilitate a sewer line when they struck a charged electrical line feeding into a building near that location, said Oakland Fire Lt. David Brue. That sparked an underground explosion. One worker suffered electrical burns primarily to his thighs. Brue said his injuries were not life-threatening, and he is being treated at Saint Francis Hospital in San Francisco. The other worker in the trench was not injured.....Full Story....
15 April 2008: Man killed in welding explosion
Officials are investigating an explosion yesterday morning that killed a man working at a biodiesel plant south of Calgary. The 33-year-old worker died in the explosion while welding a biodiesel tank, about 5 km west of High River, said Barrie Harrison, the province's occupational health and safety department spokesman. Mounties said Kevin David Lodge, from Cayley, was welding on the top of a 10-metre biodiesel settling tank inside the building when an explosion happened causing extensive damage to the tank and the building and fatally injuring the worker. Cayley is about 70 km south of Calgary. No one else was injured. Twenty workers were evacuated from the site, a building operated by Western Biodiesel, while fire crews determined it was safe, said High River fire Chief Len Zebedee.....Full Story....
14 April 2008: Welding torch accident sparks fire at OUC plant
Eighteen contractors complained of smoke inhalation after at least one welding torch sparked a fire Monday at Orlando Utility Commission's Stanton Energy Center plant in east Orange County, authorities said. The fire began about 1:15 p.m. in a water-treatment plant where workers were demolishing a water holding tank in preparation for the replacement of some older equipment, OUC spokesman Sheridan Becht said. A container of titanium metal ignited, Orange County Fire Rescue spokesman John Mulhall said.....Full Story....
14 April 2008: Fire Destroys Randolph County Sawmill
McAtee says the building is a total loss and estimates the damage at $1.5 Million dollars. The State Fire Marshal is investigating the cause of the fire, but McAtee says he thinks it started when sawdust caught fire near someone who was welding in the building. ....Full Story....
11 April 2008: Some 50 firefighters battle Norfolk church blaze $500,000 in Damage
Fifty firefighters were called to the scene in Norfolk County, some still working this morning, responding to a fire at the Waterford United Church that started at approximately 6:30 pm yesterday. Battling the blaze through the night and into this morning the large building built in 1889 suffered substantial fire, smoke and water damage. Contractors were replacing the flat roof on the addition and were finishing for the day when a neighbour noticed smoke coming from the roof. Workers then tried to extinguish the fire with portable fire extinguishers without success. They called 911. When firefighters arrived, the fire had spread rapidly into the original building. An investigation to cause and origin has commenced and will continue throughout the day. The Office of the Fire Marshal has been contacted and a structural engineer will also be on scene to determine the building’s integrity. The church had just undergone $700,000 in renovations. ....Full Story....
10 April 2008: Probe goes on into mill blaze
Fire chiefs will be reviewing a blaze that tore though a derelict mill's roofspace later today. Contractors had been working there at the time to make way for an earmarked £25 million conversion into apartments, offices and leisure complex.....Full Story....
08 April 2008: Gas leak closes Fullerton street
FULLERTON: A contractor hit an underground gas pipe line in the 1700 block of N. Placentia Boulevard, near Yorba Linda Boulevard today, authorities said. The incident was reported at 10:48 a.m. and firefighters from Fullerton and the Orange County Fire Authority were on scene, along with the Gas Co. Placentia Avenue was closed until 12:20 p.m. from Madison Avenue to Yorba Linda Boulevard. ....Full Story....
07 April 2008: Pupil burned by tar dripping through roof
A council has admitted failing to properly supervise the work of contractors after a child was burned by molten tar dripping through a hole in a school roof. In June 2007, workers at St Mark's Primary in Barrhead, Renfrewshire, were warned that they had cut too deeply through old felt in the school's roof but they continued sawing, causing debris and then tar to fall into the corridor below. Paisley Sheriff Court heard that three days after the warning, droplets of bitumen landed on a girl's hand as she left a classroom with her teacher. She was taken to hospital to have the tar removed and suffered a minor burn. East Renfrewshire Council admitted there was a lack of supervision and instruction during the work. The court was told the council deeply regretted what had happened and had carried out a review to avoid a repeat. Fining the authority £2000, Sheriff Peter Watson commented: "I do not understand how work of this nature could be carried out without some detailed plan or risk assessment."
04 April 2008: Old library saved from the Brink
BLAZE-hit sections of a former library will remain closed for the foreseeable future. Fire last week ripped through the roof of the Brinkburn Centre, on Commercial Road, in Newcastle’s East End, which is the site of the old Byker Library. The blaze broke out at 11.42am on Friday in the roof of the centre, where it is understood contractors had been working. At the time of the fire, 12 staff were inside along with a number of adults on courses. All were safely removed from the building and no-one was injured.....Full Story....
03 April 2008: FIRE crews were called to North Wales Police headquarters for the second time in two days
FIRE crews were called to North Wales Police headquarters for the second time in two days. Smoke filled one of the corridors near the basement yesterday and the building was evacuated within a matter of minutes as work continued to establish the cause of Tuesday's serious blaze, which left one man injured. Police personnel and building consultants had been examining the extent of the damage caused by the first fire in the Colwyn Bay HQ. A police spokesman said: "It's believed that water from the damping down process leaked on to a transformer in the basement, which then began to smoulder as a result of the power being switched back on. "The transformer has been isolated and the building ventilated. Staff were allowed back in to the building shortly before 3.15pm."
01 April 2008: Fire crews battle blaze at North Wales Police HQ
FIVE fire crews were called to North Wales Police headquarters today to battle a severe blaze. All staff were been evacuated from the building while firefighters tried to tackle the blaze. The fire is believed to have started in the roof of the building. One person, who is believed to have been doing contract work on the police station at the time, suffered slight smoke inhalation and was treated at the scene. A spokeswoman for North Wales Fire and Rescue Service said: "North Wales Fire and Rescue Service can confirm that crews are in attendance at The North Wales police headquarters in Colwyn Bay. "The call was received at 11.33 this morning. "Five appliances are at the scene - from Abergele, Conwy, Llandudno and two from Colwyn Bay - as well as two aerial ladder appliances from Llandudno and Rhyl. "The fire is believed to have started in the roof of the building and staff have been evacuated.....Full Story....
31 March 2008: Building under construction catches fire
CHINO - Ongoing construction sparked a fire Monday afternoon on the roof of the Chaffey College Chino Community Center. Construction workers were doing welding on the ceiling below the roof. The torch heated up metal studs, causing a stack of insulation panels that were sitting on top of the roof to catch fire. "When they got on site, firefighters put out a lot of smoke, but it wasn't a wild fire," said Battalion Chief Ruben Guerrero of the Chino Valley Independent Fire District. Twenty-two firefighters responded to the call made at 1:33 p.m. The fire was contained within 10 minutes, Guerrero said. The two-story, 22,000-square-foot community center is scheduled for completion in November, said Peggy Cartwright, spokeswoman for Chaffey College. "I don't believe this will delay construction," Cartwright said. Next door to the community center is the Chaffey College Chino Campus Main Instructional Building, which opened last week to 1,700 students. Guerrero said there were no injuries from the fire. The cost of the blaze is yet to be determined. ....Full Story....
27 March 2008: Fire reported at GM plant in Linden
A portion of the former General Motors assembly plant in Linden caught fire this afternoon when a spark from demolition work ignited the plant's paint building, officials said. Firefighters are still fighting the blaze, which was reported around 2:45 p.m. At the same time, demolition crews are ripping down the burning building, which was once used to store car paint, said Linden Mayor Richard Gerbounka. He said no one is injured and the blaze is about half extinguished. The GM plant closed in April 2005 after 70 years of operation. The 100-acre property on Routes 1&9 was purchased by Indianapolis-based Duke Realty earlier this year for more than $76 million. The company has discussed bringing a mix of industry and retail to the site once the 2.7 million-square-foot plant is demolished.
27 March 2008: Sparks from grinder likely cause of blaze: fire chief
The Loyalist fire department says a fire in a building on the grounds of the Millhaven Inn on Highway 33 was likely started by flying sparks from a grinder. Firefighters were called to the property at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday and found a large, three-bay garage engulfed in flames. The owner said he had been doing some grinding the day before. Sparks flying from the grinder may have set something alight, said Wayne Calver, chief of the Loyalist department. “There’s a good possibility that he had a smouldering fire for quite a while,” Calver said today. No one was hurt and the central inn building was not damaged.....Full Story....
26 March 2008: Welding droppings blamed for plant fire
Smoldering welding droppings from the dismantling of a former Agway mill are being blamed for a fire that damaged the abandoned plant and store on South Edgewood Avenue early Wednesday. Somerset fire Chief Gary Thomas said the blaze caused minimal damage, considering portions of the mill were in the process of being torn down. Thomas said the droppings apparently smoldered for some time before igniting the floor beneath an old silo and in the basement and first floor of the complex. The fire was reported around 2 a.m. Wednesday. Somerset Fire Department was assisted by volunteers from Rockwood, Listie and Sipesville. The building now is owned by Shaffer Block and Concrete Products.
26 March 2008: Man suffers serious burns in blast
A 57-year-old man was listed in stable condition in a Phoenix hospital Wednesday after suffering burns over more than half of his body when a vehicle fuel tank exploded as he was cutting it with a torch, according to firefighters. The accident occurred at about 10:20 a.m. Wednesday at the 3150 W. County 16th St. Renee Hernandez of Mexicali, Baja Calif., was using a cutting torch to remove the gas tank from a vehicle that was on its side, according to the Somerton/Cocopah Fire Department. The man cut through a gas line that still contained fuel, causing the fuel to flash in an explosion that burned his face, neck, chest and back, the fire department said in a news release. "It blew up in his face, basically," said Robby Rodriguez, spokesman for the fire department. The man's clothes, hat and welding goggles were burned in the extreme heat, the fire department said. Fire department paramedics rushed him to Yuma Regional Medical Center with second-degree burns over more than 50 percent of his body, the release said. He was alert and speaking to paramedics but was in extreme pain, the department said. He was later airlifted to Maricopa County Burn Center in Phoenix.....Full Story....
25 March 2008: Fire reported in roof at Verona High
Nearly 600 Verona High School students were evacuated this morning after a small roof fire was reported at the school, authorities said. The fire was first reported at 9:21 a.m. "in the eave of the roof, causing smoke to get into the building," said Assistant Chief Charlie Magati of the Verona Fire Department. The department requested mutual aide from Cedar Grove, but the fire was quickly extinguished, said Magati. Students were evacuated to either the Verona Community Center or the F.M. Brown Middle School, said Superintendent Earl Kim. No injuries were reported. There are ongoing expansion and renovation projects at the high school. "It could have been started by a worker," said Magati. "It's still under investigation."
24 March 2008: Wing of big LA condo construction site burns
A fire caused by a welder's torch tore through a wing of a huge condominium construction site in the San Fernando Valley on Monday, authorities said. More than 200 firefighters worked for about five hours to put out the blaze, said fire Capt. Tina Haro. A welder working on a third floor balcony of the five-story Ascent complex at Warner Center accidentally sparked the blaze when a piece of molten metal fell onto tar paper on the story below, Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey said. The workers could not reach the blaze with extinguishers in time to put it out, he said. ....Full Story....
23 March 2008: Blast at Meat Plant Causes Ammonia Leak and Explosion
An explosion at a meat packing plant on Sunday caused an ammonia gas leak that forced 180 people from their homes, but none of those working at the plant was injured, emergency responders said. Mark Klein, a spokesman for Minneapolis-based Cargill Inc., said the plant is closed Sundays but that about 20 contractors and a few other employees were at the site at the time of the fire. The plant employs about 800 people, he said. The fire involved an estimated 88,000 pounds of anhydrous ammonia, plus the plant had 100,000 pounds of nonflammable carbon dioxide, which is used in refrigeration systems, she said. Fairbanks said the fire broke out at 10 a.m. Workers "were doing some welding on some fans," he said. "The welders had put their equipment up and turned around and there was a fire."....Full Story.... ....More....
22 March 2008: Antipolo factory blaze declared under control
A more than eight-hour fire which hit a shoe soles factory in Antipolo City was finally declared under control Saturday evening, ABS-CBN News learned. The fire at the Marikina Rubber shoe soles factory, located in Escala Street in Barangay Mambugan, started around 11:30 a.m. An earlier report said the fire started at 4 p.m. It was declared under control only at 9:25 p.m. by officials of Antipolo City Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP). The fire reached 4th alarm which called on firefighter units from nearby municipalities to respond. Firefighters from Metro Manila also responded. The blaze was reported to be the fourth and biggest fire in Antipolo City this month which is also Fire Prevention and Safety Month nationwide. A report said firefighters had to use special chemicals to douse the fire. The cause of the blaze was still being investigated by BFP personnel. Investigators were reported to be looking at reports of welding activities inside the factory compound which may have started the fire. A power transformer reportedly exploded which caused MERALCO to cut electricity in the area. Several houses have also been damaged by the blaze. No injuries or fatalities have been reported.....Full Story....
22 March 2008: Tank Explosion Sends One To Hospital
An Englewood man was hospitalized after the tank he was welding exploded. One witness said the explosion "rocked the whole block." His friend, Dan Goddard, said the tank had oil residue in it and the man was sealing it before setting it outside of the shop. When Goddard pulled up to his business, located next door, he said he spotted his friend aimlessly walking down the sidewalk. "He had melted plastic on his shirt and back and he looked kind of crazy. He didn't pay attention to anybody. He was just sort of in his own world," said Goddard. The work was being done at Colorado Transmission, located at 3935 S. Lipan. The man is a transmission specialist who had reportedly been an employee there for about a year. Seven departments and about 30 firefighters responded to the fire. It took them about 30 minutes to extinguish the flames.....Full Story....
13 March 2008: Contractors Start Fire That Damages Old Saybrook House
Christine Howley was painting on the first floor at 5 Otis St. when the contractors working on the heating system on the second floor started yelling. Howley said she thought they might just be joking around, but when she opened the door to the hallway that leads between the old addition and the new addition, it was filled with smoke. Alfano, whose business is based in Old Saybrook, said one of his contractors was soldering new pipe for a baseboard heating system in the older portion of the house. He said the contractor put a metal block up to keep the torch from hitting the sheet rock but suddenly noticed flame coming from the wall. The man opened up the wall, he said, but the oxygen added fuel to the fire, which quickly spread to the circa 1960s paper insulation inside the wall.....Full Story....
12 March 2008: Naval headquarters gutted in €1m blaze
An historic building dating back to the early 19th century has been gutted in a major fire. A FIRE-fighting tug was used last night to battle a major blaze at the Naval Service headquarters in Cork which caused an estimated €1m worth of damage. Gardai and the Military Police have launched a joint investigation into the inferno, which destroyed part of the naval base at Cork Harbour. At its height eight units of Cork city and county fire brigades tackled the blaze, which broke out around 8.30pm on Tuesday. Firefighters battled throughout the night against strong winds to control the flames and stop the fire spreading to a second landmark building at Haulbowline, Co Cork. The building, one in a series of six warehouses, was built between 1810 and 1815 and houses the UCC Coastal Marine Resource Centre, offices and store rooms. It had been undergoing extensive renovations. ....Full Story....
11 March 2008: Welding Torch Sparked Ship Fire
A spark from a welder's torch in a laundry room raced through an air duct and caused an "explosive-type" fire aboard the cruise ship Ecstasy, the president of Carnival Corp. said Tuesday. Company president Bob Dickinson said the fire on the second deck quickly spread Monday to two decks above and the outside mooring area. Thick, black smoke billowed from the stern of the ship Monday as it passed the Miami Beach skyline into open water. Coast Guard Lt. Dennis Seehoaus said Carnival Cruise Lines initially told him the crew was dealing with a small fire and didn't need help. ....Full Story....
10 March 2008: Four-alarm fire at Mandarin Hotel site causes $2m in damage
A four-alarm fire this morning on Boylston Street at the construction site for the posh Mandarin Oriental Hotel caused an estimated $2 million in damage, the Boston Fire Department said. The Mandarin complex is nearing completion. In addition to a hotel, the building will include condo units. About 50, priced between $2 million and $12 million, have been sold. The luxury project also includes expensive rental units. Dozens of construction workers were inside the building when workers on the fourth floor spotted smoke and fire and started alerting their colleagues, workers said.....Full Story....
07 March 2008: Blaze destroys 10-bay garage near Columbia
smoldering heap of melted, twisted metal is all that's left of a 10-bay garage after a fire ravaged the structure outside Columbia on Thursday afternoon. Nearly 100 firefighters responded to the blaze at River Valley Disposal, 100 Deascenti Drive. It was ruled accidental by a state police fire marshal who said it was started by workers welding in the building. ....Full Story....
07 March 2008: Custom House Hotel Fire during re-furbishment
Up to 100 guests from a hotel near London's business district were forced to camp overnight in a nearby school after a fire destroyed the hotel roof. They found the fifth floor of the building and the roof in flames. The Custom House hotel is in the process of refurbishing and creating new looking to the hotel entrance.....Full Story....
06 March 2008: Huge fire burns in Caldwell for hours
CALDWELL — Officials say a salvage crew’s welding torch led to a three-alarm fire that gutted the vacant Scott’s Ice building in downtown Caldwell. Crews arrived on the scene at Main Street and 4th Avenue just after 10:30 a.m. Wednesday and battled the flames into the late afternoon. Four area fire agencies assisted the Caldwell Fire Department.....Full Story....
29 February 2008: Steel plant catches fire
A fire burned Thursday morning at Steel Dynamics Roanoke Bar Division in Northwest Roanoke. Firefighters received the call about 8:30 a.m., according to Roanoke Fire-EMS spokeswoman Tiffany Bradbury. The fire started while some contractors were doing demolition work, Bradbury said. The workers were welding, and sparks set some wooden beams on fire. The blaze was in an industrial area at the back of the company's property off Westside Boulevard, near the railroad tracks, she said.....Full Story....
23 February 2008: Augusta death results in fines
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is proposing a combined $50,000 fine against two companies for safety violations related to an explosion at a south Augusta biodiesel plant that killed a 35-year-old welder in August. "The hazards associated with welding near flammable and combustible chemicals are well known, yet these two companies failed to take the basic procedures that could have prevented this tragedy," said Gei-Thae Breezley, the director of OSHA's Atlanta-East Area Office.....Full Story....
20 February 2008: OSHA fines contractors $464K for safety hazards in WTC tower fire
The federal government fined two contractors hired to dismantle a condemned ground zero skyscraper $464,500 on Tuesday for more than 40 safety hazards at the building, where two firefighters died in a fire last summer. The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued 19 citations to general contractor Bovis Lend Lease and 25 to subcontractor John Galt Corp. for violations at the former Deutsche Bank tower. Galt, which was fired a week after the Aug. 18 blaze, was issued $271,500 in fines, while Bovis' fines totaled $193,000. It was the largest fine ever levied against Bovis, a contractor on several high-profile projects in the city including the Time Warner Center and the Sept. 11 memorial. According to OSHA, the contractors failed to inspect a standpipe that didn't work the day of the fire, depriving firefighters of a water supply to fight the blaze. It also said the contractors allowed construction materials to block emergency stairwells, and that they failed to prevent workers from smoking.....Full Story....
09 February 2008: Camden market hit by blaze
A major fire which at times leapt 30m (100ft) into the air has destroyed part of the world-famous Camden Market in north London. Witnesses reported hearing an explosion just after 7pm which blew out windows in buildings near the Camden Lock area. The fire took hold in a scaffolding-covered building in the Hawley Wharf part of the market on Chalk Farm Road. ....Full Story....
07 February 2008: Coppersmith Firm fined £30,000 After Worker Dies
Forsyths Ltd of Rothes admitted failing to carry out a suitable and sufficient assessment of health and safety risks for employees working in a confined area on March 17, 2005, resulting in the death of welder Robert Wilson by asphyxiation, and the injury of coppersmith Derek Brewster.....Full Story....
07 February 2008: Man injured in electrical explosion
A man is fighting for his life after suffering serious burns in an electrical explosion in central London. The workman is believed to have cut through an electrical cable near Regent's Street in the West End. The man suffered 50 per cent burns and is being treated for the life-threatening injuries at the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel, east London.....Full Story....
03 February 2008: Owner plans to rebuild - Days Inn deemed 'total loss' following Sunday fire
"A plumber was doing some soldering while changing a faucet in one of the motel rooms when the fire began, and it spread quickly," said Chris Mehta of Orangeburg, who owns the motel. At least 78 firefighters from area fire departments and dozens more emergency and support personnel responded to fight the blaze, which caused an estimated $1 million in damages, according to Orangeburg County Fire Coordinator Gene Ball. He said if the building had been equipped with sprinklers, "I believe that the fire would have been contained to one room." The blaze began just after 1 p.m., Ball said. He said construction workers at the hotel were soldering in an upper-floor room when a flame "somehow got into some kind of cloth." ....Full Story....
25 January 2008: Fire wall saves Joyce project
"A fire wall built in the 1800s saved the day," Mr. Joyce, of Dalton, said as firefighters across the street poured water on the rear section of the former industrial laundry complex that was seriously damaged by flames Friday. "We were very lucky. We were just doing the demolition." The fire broke out Friday morning as workers were using torches to break old water pipes in the rear structure. The front building sustained smoke and water damage. ....Full Story....
25 January 2008: Fire strikes Las Vegas hotel-casino
Local media reports said the fire may have started on the hotel's roof, where welders were working, but authorities said the cause had not been determined and was under investigation.....Full Story....>
24 January 2008: Police seek workers, contractors in search for cause of blaze
LAWRENCE - Investigators want to interview every worker and contractor who entered the former Millennium nightclub building where the fire started that wiped out nearly an entire city block of mostly multifamily buildings. ....Full Story....
17 January 2008: Safety criticism over fire deaths
An investigation into a blaze which led to the deaths of four firefighters has found officers were not given enough information before attending the scene. Mr Craddock said the fire service had four months to improve its arrangements for providing information on aspects such as locality of an incident, particular hazards of buildings involved and where a water supply can be found. ....Full Story....
09 January 2008: Fire forces evacuation of Schreiber Foods plant
Fire officials believe the blaze was started by a work crew that was melting ice before starting a roof repair project at the plant, which makes cheese products. The fire spread to the inside of the building, and about 75 to 100 feet across the roof of a production area.....Full Story....
07 January 2008: Korean warehouse fire kills 40
Kim Jung-keun of the Icheon fire department said he believed inflammable vapours from materials being used by the workers may been ignited by a spark. Fire officials said most of the victims were construction workers trapped inside the basement of the refrigerated goods facility who could not escape a toxic cloud of gas that came from burning insulation material. Police were investigating but had to yet to find an exact cause. Workers were injecting urethane foam into the walls in the basement of the building when the blaze began. ....Full Story....
02 January 2008: £500m Royal Marsden blaze cripples services
A devastating fire ripped through Britain's leading cancer hospital on Wednesday causing up to £500 million of damage and throwing the treatment of thousands of patients into disarray. Dr Toni Burke, who was evacuated, said: "We think the fire was where some construction work was going on. It is close to a couple of wards but luckily those wards had been closed for Christmas." ....Full Story....
11 December 2007: Fire Rages Through Storm Lake, IA Warehouse
30 personnel from the Storm Lake Fire Department were called in to battle the big warehouse fire Tuesday morning. Firefighters remained at the scene of a big warehouse fire in Storm Lake, Iowa at mid-day Tuesday. The blaze was reported shortly before 4:00am at the Tassler Pallet company, so there's a lot of wood fueling the fire. Tassler is one of several businesses housed inside a warehouse owned by Consumer Supplies. 30 firefighters from the Storm Lake Fire Department remain at the scene, and they're still trying to get the upper hand on the blaze. Mark Prosser, Storm Lake Public Safety Director said, "Our firefighters have been on the scene since a quarter to four this morning. They're still trying to knock the fire down and get it completely under control. As far as cause and origin we have no idea at this point." Cold weather has been presenting a challenge to firefighters battling the blaze, but Prosser says there had been no injuries as of mid-day. It will be some time before there is a dollar estimate on damage, but Prosser says the Tassler Pallet company is a total loss. ....Full Story....
05 December 2007: Blowtorch blamed for blaze at Hotel
HARRISONBURG - Sparks from a blowtorch ignited the fire that ripped through Harrisonburg's Ramada Inn on Wednesday, said the city's fire chief. Chief Larry Shifflett said construction workers were at the motel on South Main Street helping with an ongoing renovation project when the fire started. He said the blaze broke out as a worker was soldering a valve pipe in a wall behind a shower in Room 212. "He left the room and came back and saw the fire," Shifflett said. "He went to grab a fire extinguisher, but when he returned, the fire advanced to the point where the fire extinguisher didn't help." The fire started inside a pipe chase that runs from the floor to the roof. The 2-foot-wide chase contains electrical and plumbing lines for the building. Shifflett said the flames quickly spread from the room to the rest of the building. "It just took off from there," said Shifflett.....Full Story....
21 November 2007: Welding accident blamed for blaze; At least 30 firefighters respond to fire at site for Value Village
A major fire started at the old Canadian Tire building will likely delay its renovation into a new retail outlet. Firefighters from across the Timmins area responded to a fire call at 77 Waterloo Rd. shortly after 1 p.m. Wednesday. The blaze was described as being inside a wall at the back of the building by the emergency dispatcher. At the peak of the fire, Timmins Fire Department Lt. Tim Lawlor estimated at least 30 firefighters from the Timmins, Schumacher, Mountjoy and South Porcupine fire departments were at the scene with eight fire trucks. Smoke poured out of the back wall of the retail space adjoining the loading bay at the south end of the building. The amount of smoke grew steadily as firefighters poured water on the problem. Lawlor said the blue plastic foam insulation installed between the exterior and interior walls caught fire. Timmins Fire Department Chief Mike Pintar explained that the fire started when a worker was welding a plate in a doorway. A piece of insulation was set a light by sparks or the torch flame, he said. "They attempted to put it out with a fire extinguisher, but it spread too quickly," Pintar said. "By the time we got there, it was a fully involved fire." The loading bay is a recent addition by new owner Savers, the Seattle-based company that is renovating the building into a Value Village discount store. Only small bits of flame appeared for short periods of time near the roof of the loading bay where it meets the main building.....Full Story....
12 November 2007: Reuters: Sparks from Cutting Torch Caused Olympic Site Blaze
A huge fire at the London 2012 Olympic site, which sent smoke billowing across the city, was accidentally caused by sparks from a cutting torch during demolition work, the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) said on Wednesday. About 75 firemen battled for nearly four hours to bring the flames under control at the warehouse in Stratford, east London, last week. The blaze was caused by sparks from an oxy-acetylene torch setting light to polystyrene insulation within the walled cavity as workmen cut the steel piping, the ODA said. There were fears that easterly winds might have sent asbestos in the building miles across London, but the ODA said none had been detected in the air around the building during and after the fire, or in dust and debris that had settled elsewhere during the subsequent hours. The ODA quoted Professor Virginia Murray, head of the Health Protection Agency London's Chemical Hazards and Poisons Unit, as saying "no adverse health effects have been reported so far". ODA Chief Executive David Higgins said: "These findings confirm initial indications both that the fire was caused by accident while the warehouse was prepared for demolition and that public health was not put at risk. "However this was a serious incident and we are instigating a thorough review of our stringent health and safety procedures as a result." "Hot working" has been suspended during demolition of similar buildings on the site while a review of procedures is carried out. No one was hurt in the blaze, but it sent flames 40 to 50 feet (12 to 15 metres) into the air and a towering column of smoke could be seen for miles. Initial attempts to douse the flames failed and the emergency services were called.....Full Story....