Chemical plant fire forces evacuations
By Brian stanley firstname.lastname@example.org May 29, 2011 8:26PM
Updated: July 7, 2011 3:11PM
GRUNDY COUNTY e_SEmD A fire at a chemical plant forced over 100 nearby residences to be evacuated Sunday.
Streets, rivers and railroads were also shut down for nearly six hours.
The blaze started around 1:30 p.m. at Lyondell Basell, 8805 Tabler Road, near Morris.
“A polyethane tank lost power (from the fire) and wasn’t generating the steam needed to cool the tank,” Sheriff Terry Marketti said. “The pressure kept rising which caused concern it might explode.”
Sheriff’s police made reverse-911 calls to residents of the Dresden Acres neighborhood and other houses in the area before deputies and firefighters went door to door advising residents to leave. Non-essential personnel from other plants in the area, such as Aux Sable Liquid Products, were also removed.
The Morris Fire Department quickly classified the incident a “box alarm” to request assistance from many mutual aid departments.
An incident command center was set up in the parking lot of Jewel in Minooka. The Illinois River was closed to boating traffic, trains were stopped and state police assisted in shutting down Route 6.
No injuries were reported during the incident. The roads and other means of transportation were reopened around 7:30 p.m., Marketti said.