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Dryer Fire at Dry Mill Ethanol Plant

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A Marquis Energy official said dust may have played a role in the blaze at its facility in Hennepin, IL.

A blaze ignited in a dryer duct at the Marquis Energy dry mill ethanol plant in Hennepin, IL Wednesday morning, prompting several fire departments and emergency response agencies from the area to respond to the scene, local news organizations reported.

Workers observed smoke coming from a piece of drying equipment in the facility at about 5 a.m. and called 911, Don Rayfield, senior general counsel for Marquis told the Putnam County Record. The fire started in an area where a steam drying process is used.

“It’s possible there was a buildup of dust from drying that collected in the duct and caught on fire,” Rayfield said in the newspaper’s coverage.

“No one was injured and damage to the plant is minimal and the plant is still operating,” Hennepin Fire Department said in a statement posted to its Facebook page, noting that the blaze was limited to a small area.  

Crews managed to bring the flames under control by 8:30 a.m., according to news broadcaster WMBD.

The company is investigating the cause of the fire.

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