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Responders put out fire at Marcal Paper mill

ELMWOOD PARK, N.J. (From news reports) − History fortunately did not repeat itself Friday, July 5, when a fire broke out at Marcal Paper as an afternoon blaze was extinguished with no injuries.

This facility was the site of a devastating fire back in 2019 that destroyed 30 of the 36 structures that stood on the property including the collapse of the main warehouse building.

Friday's fire started sometime between noon and 12:30 p.m. in the basement, police Chief Michael Foligno said. The cause of the fire in the cramped space was not yet known, Foligno said.

The fire reached four alarms but was under control by shortly after 3 p.m. Marcal workers were in the building when the fire first started, but luckily everyone was able to safely exit the building. No one was injured but some firefighters dealt with heat and dehydration issues, Foligno said.

Officials were still assessing the damage as of late Friday afternoon.

Statement from a spokesperson for Marcal:
"Earlier today, our team noticed smoke coming from under a steel plate in an area of our property not near our paper machines. As part of our standard operating procedures, our local fire department and town officials were contacted to assist us with the matter. The smoke developed into what we believed could be a small fire that was not easily accessed. Due to the skill of the fire department, we were able to remove a steel plate blocking access to the area and quickly eliminated the risk. The source of the fire was a spark from regular maintenance work being conducted in the area.
We are thankful that no Marcal associates were injured and we will not have any material disruption of operations. We also thank the local fire departments for promptly arriving on scene and helping our team extinguish the smoke and area where the spark occurred."

The 2019 fire that destroyed the original Marcal Paper Mill
Over five years have passed since a devastating blaze destroyed the original Marcal Paper Mill, taking down the iconic sign that sat atop the main building and demolishing almost all of the structures on the site.

In 2019, Chief Foligno described it as probably the worst fire that Elmwood Park has ever seen which was exacerbated by the frigid temperatures and gusty wind.

The original Marcal Paper building, which stood in Elmwood Park since the 1940s, had a history of fires, but none as bad as this.

Since the fire, Crow Holdings, a Dallas-based company, purchased 12 acres of the property from Marcal. They completed the construction of a new warehouse earlier this year where the original paper factory used to stand.

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Members Opinions:
July 08, 2024 at 12:41pm
Immaculate housekeeping (and monitoring bearings for rising temperatures) is the key to stopping most fires. The housekeeping must not be just what you can see, but inside ducts and hoods.

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