Fire at Baby Food Company, Plant Vows to Rebuild in Town
Fresno, CA -- Fire engines remained at Initiative Foods baby food plant into Monday after the Sunday morning fire.
Employees gathered outside the rubble that was their job site. It smoldered beneath the collapsed roof where jars of baby food and charred cardboard boxes lay. Officials stood in front of the rubble and discussed how to restart production and get their workers back on the job as soon as possible.
The fire destroyed a 200,000 square foot space. When the fire was reported, 75 firefighters from 11 agencies reported to the scene.
The firefighters were struggling with water supply. Power lines needed to be shut down to avoid the risk of electrocution, but with that, the water pressure went as well. Firefighters had to use the residential water supply until they could tap into an underground canal. Nearby residents had no power and extremely low water pressure as the fire raged on.
The investigation is proving difficult because of the collapsed roof. Hot spots keep popping up hidden beneath the collapse. What firefighters were able to determine is that fire sprinklers were installed randomly - not to code - and that may have contributed to the fire spread. It is very important that fire sprinklers are 1) updated when a renovation takes place to meet code and 2) maintained to ensure that they are in working condition if a fire were to take place.
100 people are currently out of the job until the plant is able to rebuild.
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