NewsCovering America

Actions

Chemical plant fire in Omaha extinguished; evacuations end

nebraska fire.jpeg
Posted at 3:08 PM, May 31, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-31 18:08:40-04

OMAHA, Neb.  — Fire crews in Nebraska spent Monday night battling a fire at a chemical plant in Omaha.

That massive fire caused trouble in parts of the downtown area and south Omaha, with heavy smoke throughout parts of the city.

Batallion Chief Scott Fitzpatrick said the first 911 call came in just before 7 p.m. Monday. Firefighters retreated after finding a much bigger fire than anticipated.

Fitzpatrick added that crews fought the fire from outside, noting that the building contained propane bottles and other chemicals. Some items flew at least 50 feet in the air due to explosions.

The fire happened at a plant owned by the Nox-Crete company, which makes concrete sealing products and works with chemicals inside that facility.

Residents in the area were initially asked to evacuate around 10:30 p.m. Monday, but they were lifted by Tuesday evening.

Nebraska Regional Poison Center says it does not know precisely what chemicals were involved in the fire.

"Some of the chemicals may contain hydrocarbons which can cause respiratory irritation if inhaled and possibly CNS depression, the agency said. "Treatment would be symptomatic and supportive. So far, our poison center has been contacted by one person with an indirect exposure who is experiencing dizziness."

202200530 Nox Crete Factory Fire -LKamrowski-1012.jpg
OFD firefighters approach the Nox Crete fire on May 30, 2022.

Officials said no injuries were reported from the fire or explosions.

Fitzpatrick said the cause of the fire remains under investigation.

This story was first reported by KMTV staff in Omaha, Nebraska.