Firefighters fight flames at recycling center

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Rocky Mount firefighters battle a blaze Tuesday at Regional Material Recovery Inc.

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From Staff Reports

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

While most people were celebrating America’s birthday Tuesday, Rocky Mount firefighters were busy battling a blaze at a local recycling center.

Firefighters responded to a report of a fire at 11:43 a.m. at Regional Materials Recovery Inc. on 816 South Halifax Road. Battalion Chief Dewan Taylor said the fire was contained within 35-45 minutes of firefighters arrival, adding because the fire was so large, getting it completely under control took “a couple of hours.”

He said a mixture of metal shavings and other combustible materials at the facility caused the fire to start. Taylor stressed fighting fires at the center was not uncommon for the department.

“This is not the first time that we’ve been out there,” Taylor said. “It’s at least the second time that the department has responded to a fire out there, but the first time that the battalion who responded Tuesday had been out there.”

While he said the department has previously responded to fires at the facility, Taylor would not comment on whether or not the company’s management or owner had talked to the city about ways to prevent more fires from happening at the center.

“I am not aware if any talks have taken place between the company and the city,” Taylor said.

Taylor said the cause of the fire was determined to be spontaneous combustion, adding no one was at the center when the fire broke out. No firefighters were injured battling the blaze.