Firefighters still at Welland factory blaze
Wisps of smoke are still coming off the old Henniges factory in Welland.
Firefighters worked through the night to put out a blaze at the plant which most recently turned out rubber auto parts. Smoke was first spotted at the plant late Tuesday afternoon & crews didn't get the fire under control until early Wednesday morning.
Thick, dense smoke coming off the fire could be seen from as far away as Burlington.
But Fire Chief Denys Prevost tells 610 CKTB's Kevin Jack the blaze turned out not to be as bad as first thought. Still, it took down some 25% of the plant---up to 20 000 sq ft. Damage is pegged at somewhere between $500 000 & $1-million.
Prevost says it's still too early to determine what caused the fire, but it doesn't look to be a case of arson.
The plant's been empty since Henniges shut down in Welland late last year. Prevost says the building was being prepared for demolition with recyclables & equipment being taken out. The Fire Chief doesn't believe anyone was in the factory when the fire started. No one was hurt.
Prevost says there wasn't a large impact from the smoke coming off the building. People who live downwind from the plant, around Almond St & Ross St were asked to close their windows & doors.
In the 8am Wednesday, there were still 30 firefighters on scene. Prevost expects them to stick around for most of the day to make sure hotspots don't flare up.
He says it'll also take some time to pack up all the firefighting gear which has blocked off some roads nearby.
Ross St at JohnSt & Almond St is still blocked off. So is River Rd. 610 CKTB will keep you updated on access to the area with Time Saver Traffic.
Major fire in Welland at old automotive plant