Fire leads to explosion & injures two firefighters

Local News
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Two firefighters have been released from the hospital after suffering minor injuries at a structure fire on Friday morning.

The Galesburg Fire Department responded to the structure fire at 701 West Sixth Street at 9:33 AM. The response included all three stations and the 11 personnel on duty. They were responding to a call that reported there was a dryer bin with product on fire inside the bin with flames showing.

Upon arrival fire crews noted white pressurized smoke showing from a tower at the top of the building. Acting Battalion Chief Jon Cypert assumed Command and fire crews were directed by employees to the area of the fire. Employees had already been trying to put the fire out with water. Capt. Brock Schmitt and FF Andrew O’Daniel moved to the top of the bin on a catwalk to attack the fire from the top of the bin opening. Before they could get into position there was an explosion knocking down both Schmitt and O’Daniel. The explosion could be seen from outside the structure and blew off several metal ventilation panels. Interior fire crews were evacuated and exterior attack lines were quickly set up outside on the roof of the structure. The fire was brought under control in approximately 15 minutes. 

Capt. Schmitt and FF O’Daniel did receive minor injuries. They were transported to OSF St. Mary’s Hospital by Galesburg Hospital Ambulance Service for evaluation. They were treated and released.

The building did receive heavy smoke and fire damage. 

Galesburg Fire Department Investigators along with the Office of the State Fire Marshal’s Office are still currently investigating the cause of the fire at this time.

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