Firefighters contain large blaze at Dallas-area factory

U.S. & World

GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas (AP) — A massive daylong fire at a Dallas-area plastics factory Wednesday that sent a dense column of toxic black smoke over North Texas before fire crews could tame it has been contained, fire officials said.

There were no reports of injuries from the midnight Tuesday blaze at the Poly-America complex in Grand Prairie, authorities said. No evacuations were ordered, but people with underlying health conditions were asked to avoid the area.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and Grand Prairie officials are continually checking air quality conditions, Gov. Greg Abbott said in a statement, urging area residents to heed local officials’ advisories and warnings.

Fire officials had initially thought the fire would burn into Thursday. By 4 p.m. Wednesday, though, city officials posted a statement that the flames had been contained and that the fire was expected to be extinguished Wednesday night.

“These are rolls of plastic sheeting, huge rolls, and they’re stacked sometimes eight feet high. Plastic is hard to put out and it’s just gonna burn.”

Firefighters believe the blaze started when a power line fell about midnight Tuesday near an area where plastic rolls were being stored, causing them to catch fire, Assistant Fire Chief Bill Murphy said. “These are rolls of plastic sheeting, huge rolls, and they’re stacked sometimes eight feet high. Plastic is hard to put out and it’s just gonna burn,” he said.

Poly-America is headquartered in Grand Prairie and specializes in products made from polyethylene, such as trash bags, drop cloths and plastic sheeting, according to the company’s website.

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This story has been updated to correct the last name of the assistant fire chief. His name is Bill Murphy, not Bill Murray.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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