$1M Chemical Blaze Guts Coating Plant
Fire ripped through a polymer coating facility in Canada over the weekend, causing $1 million in damage and requiring 60 firefighters to bring the blaze under control.
Scores of firefighters worked for three hours in windy conditions to contain the two-alarm blaze that broke out about 4:40 a.m. Saturday (April 20) at Integrated Protective Coatings' facility in Edmonton, Alberta, authorities said.
No injuries were reported, but the company said its polymer coating facility "suffered major damage."
A passerby reported the fire; the cause was under investigation.
District fire chief Jim Henderson called the building "a total loss.”
“There was lots of paint thinners, that kind of thing. It was a protective coating plant,” Henderson told the Edmonton Journal. "Because it’s fairly toxic smoke, everybody had to be on air tanks. The guys tried (to go inside) at first, but then it was decided to be a defensive fire attack.”
Firefighters notified Alberta Environment because of chemicals in the building. Hazardous materials crews checked water run-off for chemicals and found it was neutral, Henderson told the newspaper.
"We must report to all of our customers that in the early morning of Saturday April 20 a fire destroyed the north end of our coating facility in Edmonton," the company said in a letter posted to its website. The company thanked firefighters for their efforts and said its electroless nickel coating bays "were relatively unaffected."
Sixty firefighters worked for three hours in windy conditions to bring the blaze under control.
"IPC Senior Management is on site ... they are currently working with the Edmonton Fire Department Investigators and our insurance representatives," the company said. "Our Senior Management team will be meeting through the weekend to finalize our contingency plans.
"Rest assured that we are evaluating options to mitigate any business interruptions in the short term. As soon as we have finalized our go forward plan and have determined what current orders have been affected, we will communicate it to all our customers.
We anticipate being operational in our ENC division by mid week, and our Polymer division by late in the week."
About the Company
IPC has more than 35 years of experience in the global oil and gas sector. In addition to its Edmonton headquarters, the company has a facility in Tianjin, China. "We continually review our safety measures to ensure we exceed the standards set forth by regulatory bodies," the company says on its website.
Company president Bob Frankie told the Edmonton Journal that the company would rebuild, but possibly in a new location.
“We’re a growing, thriving business with a great product, with great staff, great people so, absolutely,” he said.