No serious injuries reported in 4th-floor blaze at former Kellogg’s plant

Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL

No serious injuries were reported after fire crews responded to a fourth-floor blaze at the former Kellogg’s plant in east London.

Firefighters responded to the building around 4 p.m. and found smoke coming from windows on the fourth floor and ventilation units on the roof, said assistant deputy Chief David Walmsley.

Workers in a section of the mammoth building had been taking apart and cleaning the filters of a large industrial filter system when the blaze occurred, he said. Dust in the filters ignited after the workers used a cutting torch to cut off some bolts.

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“They’re quite large, and once they get going, they’re very difficult to put out,” he said of the filters.

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Walmsley said crews managed to locate workers in the building and helped get them out. One worker was reported missing, but they were later located.

“He was then positioned onto the roof, kept out of harm’s way,” he said. “Then we used our aerial unit to take three people down off of the roof safely to the ground.”

An official with Middlesex-London EMS said three people were assessed at the scene, but no one was transported to hospital.

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With construction and rehabilitation underway at the former plant, crews had a tricky time navigating the building, Walmsley said.

While a fire damage wasn’t known late Tuesday afternoon, Walmsley said filter units like the one involved in the blaze can cost upwards of $100,000. The building itself was fine, but needed to be ventilated, he said.

“I would believe [the fire] was just contained to that unit, so we weren’t really worried about extension to any other areas of that building.”
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