Tue March 20, 2012
Doe Run assessing damage after early morning fire
Several Jefferson County fire departments responded to a blaze early Tuesday morning at the Doe Run Company’s primary smelter in Herculaneum.
Company officials say there were no injuries and they are now assessing damage.
According to a statement from Doe Run, the fire was confined to the site’s substation.
Captain Kevin Baker with the Herculaneum Fire Department says they received the alarm at around 4:20 a.m and quickly responded.
“We arrived on the scene at 4:26 and upon arrival we witnessed several transformers and their substation arcing and popping and exploding,” said Capt. Baker. “It’s typical of what we see in a substation fire of that size.”
Baker says they were unable to identify the sourceof the fire.
“We know it was electrical,” said Baker. “We weren’t able to determine if it was the feed coming in from Ameren UE or if it was a malfunction on the Doe Run side. We don’t investigate that because we have no expertise in electrical engineering.”
Baker says the extent of the fire was enough to shut down the facility Tuesday morning. There’s no word on whether it remains shutdown.
Doe Run officials were not available for interviews. But in a statement, General Manager Gary Hughes said the company continues to investigate the source of the fire.