Winona, MN – Fire at manufacturing plant contained by sprinkler system; No injuries reported

A pallet loaded too close to a radiant heater in the storage shipment area of Behrens Manufacturing caught fire early Friday morning, triggering three sprinkler heads and causing some structural and water damage.

The Winona Fire Department responded to the scene at 1250 E. Sanborn St. at 5:13 a.m. after being notified by the building’s internal alarm system, according to fire chief Curt Bittle. The department paged in all of its off-duty firefighters to total 18 responding.

The scene was cleared at 7:37 a.m., Bittle said, with much of the time devoted to clearing up water damage from the sprinklers that had kept the flames contained to the storage area. Firefighters put out what was left of the blaze upon their arrival.

There were no injuries and the fire was an accidental one, according to Bittle. A monetary assessment of the damages had not been done as of Friday morning.

After the crew conducted air monitoring to determine whether the building’s day shift could report to work, Behrens chose to cancel its 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. shift, Bittle said, but he expected the shift beginning at 3 p.m. would run as usual.

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