Several fire and police departments responded to a warehouse fire at the Lonza chemical plant in Charleston, TN early Wednesday morning that involved chlorine, several local news organizations reported.
Cleveland-Bradley Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Troy Spence told the Cleveland Banner that the fire started in a warehouse area that contained chemicals used in swimming pools. Spence said he received word of the blaze at about 4:23 a.m.
Officials suspect that the fire started because the chemicals came into contact with moisture, which caused it to ignite, Spence said in the newspaper’s coverage. A cause of the fire has not yet been officially determined.
During the incident, Cleveland-Bradley EMA posted on Twitter and Facebook telling those living in the immediate area of the plant to remain indoors. At about 5 a.m., Cleveland-Bradley EMA posted on social media telling area residents that they could “resume normal activities,” as the fire was under control and no hazardous materials were impacting the surrounding areas.
The Charleston plant, run by Arch Chemicals Inc., employs about 280 workers and is a major site for calcium hypochlorite and pool- and spa-related product, according to information on Lonza’s website.