Hazardous waste recycling plant burned
Romulus, MI— A fire and
explosions at The Environmental Quality Co. (EQ) in Romulus, Michigan,
forced the temporary closing of the hazardous-waste recycling
and treatment plant near the Detroit Metro Airport August 10.
Authorities reported no injuries
and no one was inside the plant when the fire started at approximately
9PM Tuesday, August 9. Firefighters had a difficult time fighting
the fire due to the multiple explosions and plumes of black smoke
rolling off the site.
The mayor of neighboring community,
Wayne, Michigan, Al Haidous, declared a state of emergency and
urged the evacuation of residents within a half-mile radius because
it was unclear exactly what chemicals were burning and air quality
could pose a danger to resident’s health. At least 1,000
homes were evacuated in Wayne and it is unclear exactly how many
were evacuated in Romulus.
EQ´s director of corporate
communications, Dan Gilbert, indicated that only part of the plant
was affected by the fire, which was still burning Wednesday, August
10, on the 11-acre EQ Resource Recovery Inc. site.
According to Dan Gilbert, the
area of the plant that appeared to have been destroyed includes
one of two tank farms and a drum pad. The fire appears to have
bypassed the area that handles wastewater treatment and oil recycling.
The fire will force companies that use the plant for recycling
and treatment of hazardous materials, to look for other options
temporarily, Gilbert said.