OTTUMWA FIRE: Meat Plant Ignites

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A fire at an Ottumwa meat packing plant could have been worse than it actually was according to firefighters.

People first spotted flames coming from the Cargill pork processing facility on South Iowa Avenue around 2 p.m. Saturday afternoon.

The fire broke out in an area where there weren’t any people or animals. As a result, there are no reports of injuries.

The Ottumwa Courier reports it took firefighters 3 hours to put out the flames that were caused by welding.

Fire Chief Tony Miller told the paper, “Someone was doing some welding and maintenance on a new tank they were installing, it got ignited and caused the fire, creating a tremendous amount of black smoke. There was a lot of grease built up, which is very flammable.”

The fire was isolated to a single department causing approximately $250,000 in damage.