EVERETT (CBS) — A large fire engulfed the building of a scrap metal recycling company in Everett on Wednesday morning. Schnitzer Steel Northeast, which is located on 69 Rover Street, is where the fire took place.
Thick black smoke was seen coming out of the building, which is near Encore Boston Harbor Casino.
“This is the first fire that I have responded to, like this, at a shredding facility,” said Vice President of Public Affairs for Schnitzer Steel Colin Kelly, who also described what the building does. “It is a big metal structure that actually shreds scrap metal. It breaks an automobile or a refrigerator or whatever goes in it into fist-sized pieces of scrap metal.”
Everybody that was in the building got out safely and is accounted for. Firefighters were still putting out the fire the rest of the morning.
“Once we responded here during the fighting of the fire, there were some secondary explosions. But unsure what caused them,” said Everett Fire Chief Scott Dalrymple.
Video from Local 143 shows the intense scene firefighters faced when they arrived.
What our firefighters were facing when they first arrived on scene at 69 Rover street Schnitzer Northeast pic.twitter.com/ziYTU34VsA
— Everett Firefighters (@IAFFLocal143) December 8, 2021
A state hazmat team is also monitoring air quality to identify any potential toxins from the fire.
Kelly, who has worked for Schnitzer for 16 years, said he was thankful that everyone is safe.
“When I arrived this morning, I had just gotten the message that the head count had been done and everybody was safe. I saw fires driving in from my home. And yes, there was quite a sense of relief,” said Kelly.
He also added that the building is probably not going to be in use for a while.
“I’m sure that it is not going to be functional for a period of time. Unfortunately, until we get inside and evaluate what needs to be addressed, I can’t give you an idea of what that timeframe looks like,” he said.
The Everett Fire Department is asking people to avoid the areas of Robin, Dexter, and Mystic Street in the lsland End Industrial area as crews continue to work at the scene.
The cause of the fire is unknown at this time.