Fire-releasing toxic fumes were put up in a plastic recycling plant in Indiana. The officials warn that the fire could go on for days.
Eastern Indiana was covered with black plumes and toxic smoke. People living nearby were asked to evacuate immediately.
The industrial fire took place on Wednesday and around 2000 people staying nearby were asked to evacuate as the authorities warned that the toxic fire would go on for days.
According to Matthew Cain, director of the Wayne County Emergency Management Agency, The fire took place at 2 pm on Wednesday on a 14-acre property in Richmond, Indiana.
After the fire broke out, schools were shut down and shelters were set up around the city to rescue the survivors.
Christine Stinson, the executive director of the Wayne County Health Department, said at a news conference on Wednesday that the particles released were hazardous for health causing respiratory problems and a burning sensation in the eyes and chest. She further added that exposure to these particles could trigger asthma and bronchitis.
Officials believe that the incident took place after a semitrailer caught on fire on the property. There is no information as of now as to what caused this fire.
Mr. Cain believes that it seems that no foul play was the reason behind this accident.
Terry Snyder, 20, was just outside of his house a block away from the plant on Tuesday afternoon when he noticed the growing plumes of smoke in the distance and ran inside to tell his mother, Wendy Snyder.
Terry Snyder, a 20-year-old resident, said that he was outside the block with his mother when all he could see was smoke getting darker and darker. I was running around to make sure everything was alright.
Stephen Jones, the Indiana state fire marshal said that the smoke is extremely toxic and people need to avoid getting themselves exposed to the smoke as it could be life-threatening.
The people who were staying in the shelters were urged to turn off the heating, air conditioning, and venting units and keep their doors closed until the smoke is completely tackled.
The plastic recycling plant is known as My Way Trading Warehouse which is owned by the city of Richmond, private citizens, and the Wayne County Emergency Management Agency.
No fatalities have been reported according to Mr. Cain. The next official update from the county’s emergency management agency is scheduled for Thursday afternoon.
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