Amesbury, MA – Fire inside “explosion room” at industrial building put out by fire sprinklers

A regional hazardous materials team responded to an industrial building at 144 Elm St. late Tuesday morning after a flash fire in a room threatened to spread chemicals to the surrounding area.

But, according to Amesbury Fire Chief Ken Berkenbush, sprinkler heads in what he called an “explosion room” at Arc Technologies put out the fire before firefighters arrived about 1:50 a.m.

As a precaution, firefighters from several area communities responded and a stretch of Elm Street near Oakland Street was closed to traffic. The cause of the fire remains under investigation, but Berkenbush said it broke out while workers were moving the contents of one container to another.

Once the hazardous materials team arrived, members inspected the building, conducted air quality readings and performed other tasks to make sure the building was safe.

“Everything came out OK,” Berkenbush said, adding that a worker at the defense industry company sustained minor injuries.

Among those helping local firefighters were units from Newburyport, Newbury, Salisbury, West Newbury and several southern New Hampshire communities. Some of the same departments covered the Amesbury station during the roughly three-hour call and responded to five medical calls, Berkenbush added.

No firefighters were injured.

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