LONGVIEW — Longview Fire Marshal Johnny Zackary says the local Coors plant sustained extensive damage in a Tuesday fire, and the plant is now temporarily closed. Firefighters say an afternoon rainstorm helped crews gain control of the blaze. Several firefighters were treated for dehydration and minor injuries. KETK reports the blaze began shortly before 10:30 Tuesday morning and was finally put out around 3:30 p.m. The fire was caused by soldering and sweating of copper pipes, which then ignited foam insulation. Zackary says workers were repairing the pipes when the fire was sparked.
The fire was feeding itself from spray foam insulation, producing noxious gas and reigniting continuously. This was hindering firefighters from making progress to contain flames. Meanwhile, smoke billowed from the roof. Around 12:15, the blaze grew and additional fire crews were called to the scene. Zackary said he was concerned about toxicity in the smoke fumes affecting firefighters and the surrounding population.
The building is located at 2002 East Cotton Street. The distribution site employs more than 60 employees and has about 47,000 square feet of space, according to the company’s website. The Kilgore Fire Department and Judson Metro Volunteer Fire Departments assisted in covering the city while Longview firemen battled the blaze.