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Massive fire at chemical plant prompts evacuations in Rockton; No injuries reported – Las Vegas, Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada 2021-06-14 13:21:55 –

Rockton, Illinois — Paramedics remain at the scene of a major fire at a chemical plant in Rockton, Illinois.

The fire began on Monday around 7 am at Chemtool Incorporated on 1165 Prairie Hill Road. The company manufactures liquid, lubricant and grease products that are distributed around the world.

According to WTVO About 70 employees were evacuated and were unharmed. Kirk Wilson, Fire Chief of Rockton, said one firefighter had been treated for his injury.

At 8:46 am, the Rockton police station warned that fire authorities had ordered a forced evacuation near the factory after reports of a very large eruption of smoke being picked up by weather radar. Was issued. It told people to evacuate their homes and businesses and wait for further instructions.

“At this point, there is no danger to the air quality on the ground,” Wilson said, but ordered evacuation as a precautionary measure due to the large amount of smoke.

“We don’t want environmental nightmares to occur,” he said.

Rockton’s planning and development manager, Trisha Diduch, said about 1,000 people were affected by the evacuation order and estimated that downtown areas about a mile away from the factory were evacuated. She said the order was for a mile (1.6 kilometers) in radius.

Rockton Middle School was set up as a shelter on 6121 Elevator Road.

The fire chief also said it could take several days for the oil fire to burn out.

Chemtool has issued the following statement:

We have confirmed that everything on the premises is safe and explained. Our current concern is the safety of all employees and the surrounding community. As a precautionary measure, authorities have evacuated residents within a 1-mile radius of the site.

The cause of this incident is still unknown, but we will work with local governments and our own risk management team to determine what happened and identify corrective actions. Details will be announced as soon as they are known.

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker said his office is monitoring Rockton’s situation, adding: If you are in the area, follow the instructions of your local law enforcement agency to ensure your safety. “

A large amount of dark smoke spread from the fire to the south-southeast, causing ash and debris to fall on the inhabitants of the south to DeKalb.

A US Environmental Protection Agency investigator from Chicago went to the scene and will issue a statement late Monday, spokesman Rachel Basler said. According to spokeswoman Kim Bigs, they were coordinating with the Illinois EPA, which had sent the team.

Rockton is located in Winnebago County, near the Wisconsin border, about 95 miles (153 km) northwest of Chicago.

This is a developing story. Please check again for more information.

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