Bay City, Michigan 48706
Front Page Photo of the Day Log-IN About us July 7, 2003
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Industrial Fire Threatens North Bay City

Hundreds evacuated as dense black smoke blankets northern areas of city

July 7, 2003       Leave a Comment
By: Stephen Kent

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Bay City fire fighters received the call at 3:32am Monday morning. A large industrial fire had broken out in the in the Marquette Industrial Park area. "The buiding was fully involved when our crews arrived on the scene", said Fire Chief Doug Doefer. "There were huge balls of fire and dense smoke".

The facility housed American Recycling Center Inc., a recycling facility where old tires are pelletizedand distrubuted as road and track surfacing material. Another company near the rear of the build stored barrels of fuel oil and other materials.

Bynoon Monday some 65 residents in the area had been evacuated due to the smoke. Debra Monroe, executive director of the East Shoreline Chapter of the American Red Cross, said "We have opened a Shelter at the Bangor Township Hall, and have pet shelters at Rainbow Kennels, and Animal Control.

Shelters will be open at least until 6:00pm. If the wind were to shift more evacuations could be possible." Chief Doefer said "the wind was good to us. Had it blown the other direction we might have had to evacuate a much larger part of town."

Monroe said of the Red Cross effort "our DAT volunteers have been on the scene since 4 a.m. this morning. I just arrived backto the office from the scene, where HAZmat, Bay Med Personnel, all fire departments, FEMA, and a number of other disaster folks are there."

Monroe went on to say "It was rewarding to see how well the response teams reacted. It shows that the long hours of training and exercises we do really pay off. Everyone got there quickly. They knew their jobs and where to be and they kicked into action."Besides arranging emercenty shelter and assistance to victims, the Red Cross provided emergencyworkers with food, drink, places to rest and other services.

The fire was located in a large industrial complex immediately adjacent to General Housing Corp., a builder of manufactured housing. Chief Doefer said "the wind was in our favor here too. The fire was blown away from GHC. And we had men between the two facilities."

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Stephen Kent

Steve Kent and his family have lived in Bay City for 40 years. He is VP of Technical Services at MMCC which produces MyBayCity.Com. Kent is active in many Bay City civic organizations.

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