Firefighters respond to Brooks-area blaze
Marion County Fire District No. 1 responded to an early morning fire in the Brooks area on Wednesday, Oct. 14, that damaged a hazelnut drying facility.
MCFD Battalion Chief Joshua Darland said initial units were dispatched at 1:52 a.m. from the Brooks Station 5, where firefighters reported visible flames from just outside their station and requested a second alarm. The blaze was in the 7500 block of N.W. 65th Ave.
"The fire was burning in a hopper containing approximately 50,000 pounds of hazelnuts," Darland noted. "The facility is located in an area with no fire hydrants and required water to be shuttled to extinguish the fire. A request was made for four additional water tenders to help shuttle water to the scene."
Firefighters were able to contain the blaze to that single hopper, bringing it under control in roughly 45 minutes. They remained on the scene for several more hours, dousing smoldering hazelnuts inside the hopper.
A total of seven fire engines, six water tenders, two medic units, two battalion chiefs, a ladder truck and 40 personnel fought the fire.
"This response required the use of numerous mutual aid units from multiple fire districts to assist and the scene and provide coverage for ... the duration of the fire," Darland said, extending thanks to assisting fire districts from Woodburn, Mount Angel, Monitor, Silverton and Keizer, along with Woodburn Ambulance, Marion County Sheriff's deputies, Marion County Public Works, PGE and Northwest Natural.
Additionally, Darland said Turner Fire District, Salem Fire and Falck Ambulance assisted by covering multiple calls occurring within MCFD1 during the fire.
There were no injuries to firefighters or workers at the facility. The exact cause of the fire remains under investigation but is not suspicious in nature and is believed to be related to the drying process.
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