DENVER (KDVR) — The Denver Fire Department said a fire was burning Wednesday afternoon at a recycling yard.
Smoke was spotted in the 4900 block of Washington Street around 12 p.m. Wednesday.
Officials aren’t certain heat played a role in what started the fire, but crews spent several hours working with the plant’s staff to dig through the trash and put out hot spots, ensuring the fire was completely put out before leaving the scene.
Firefighters say they saw 15-foot flames when they first reached the site. Heat made fighting the fire difficult.
“The battalion chief and division chiefs are responsible for rotating the crews out so they can get to rehab to hydrate and take temperatures,” said Julie Browman, with Adams County Fire Rescue. “On very hot days like this, the rotations are shorter so that they can get to rehab quicker so the crews don’t get dehydrated.”
Crews would take turns fighting the blaze and visiting the pop-up rehab centers to cool down and hydrate.
“It’s a very dangerous situation,” said Greg Pixley, Denver Fire Department spokesperson. “Typically, your body temperature is around 98.6 degrees. It’s 100 degrees outside. So unless there is wind blowing, your body doesn’t have the chance to cool down, because the air around it is higher than your body temperature. So we have to work extra hard putting ice packs behind the neck, opening the coats, and removing gear so air can cool down the body.”
No injuries were reported. The fire was ruled accidental.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.