CORINTH – A machinery malfunction caused a pellet mill in Corinth to go up in flames Wednesday night.
Around twenty-two fire departments responded to Corinth Wood Pellets Manufacturing on Hob Road after a fire was called in around 7 p.m.
Corinth’s fire chief was taken to the hospital with heat exhaustion, but is expected to be okay.
Fire officials said the site uses high heat and sawdust to make wood pellets. They said while there are occasionally fires at the mill, they’re usually small and easily handled. According to Corinth Assistant Fire Chief Jeff Bragdon, Wednesday’s fire was different.
“Tonight the fire actually got ahead of us there and got up into the attic space of the main part of the processing plant,” said Assistant Fire Chief Bragdon. “I don’t know the name of the machine, but it’s that machine that we always come to that seemed to have the problem.”
That machinery fire caused the roof of the processing plant to collapse. According to Assistant Chief Bragdon, that building is a total loss. A nearby warehouse and two-story office building are still standing.
The Salvation Army and an Air National Guard tanker also responded. That tanker alone holds about 80,000 gallons of water.
The roadway near Hob Road was closed to traffic for part of Wednesday night. Traffic was being rerouted on Route 15 so fire crews could truck in water from a nearby pond.
The fire was contained by late Wednesday night.
Assistant Fire Chief Bragdon said an excavator will be coming in to tear down the remaining walls, so firefighters can better get to hot spots.
Crews were expected to be on scene overnight and into Thursday.