Edwardsville, IL – Sprinkler system assists firefighters in controlling warehouse storage fire

The Edwardsville Fire Department spent five hours attacking a fire and its aftermath at a redistribution center located near I-255 Wednesday afternoon. Fire Chief Rick Welle said the call came to the station from the D.B. Schanker redistribution center, located at 3049 Westway Drive, at around 2:18 p.m. Thursday for a direct alarm call. Those calls come from buildings – mostly commercial – with sprinkler systems. The fire department is notified when the sprinklers come into action. Welle said that alarm was followed by a 911 call from within the building alerting his department to an active fire.

When firefighters arrived at the scene, Welle said they found several pallets of feminine hygiene products aflame. Mutual aid on the scene was provided by both the Wood River and Glen Carbon Fire Departments, and the Glen Carbon and Collinsville Fire Departments had EMS to back-fill the Edwardsville station.

No injuries were reported from the fire, despite and ambulance being on scene, Welle said. The cause of that fire is still under investigation. Welle said he could not estimate the amount of product lost to the blaze, but said his department worked with workers within the building, using forklifts and skid-steers to take the product outside for ventilation.

Besides fire, lots of water and smoke damage was done within the southern part of the building, but little to no damage was done to the building itself. Welle said the redistribution center was able to quarantine the rest of the building from the southern portion, ensuring the rest of the products stored within were not damaged by fire, smoke or water. The fire department is working with the company itself to determine exact losses. A ventilation fan was brought from the Fairview Heights Fire Department to ensure the building had been properly and thoroughly ventilated. Welle said firefighters stayed on the scene until around 7:00 p.m. Thursday to assist with that ventilation and cleanup.

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