Packing Investigated in Arkansas Plant Explosion

August 19, 2011

A senior vice president for Clean Harbors Inc. says investigators will look into the packing of a drum of lithium that ignited and burned a warehouse in El Dorado.

The Tuesday afternoon fire destroyed the warehouse and about 120 drums of waste metals. No injuries are reported.

Phil Retallick says the building held metals that become unstable when exposed to high temperature or water. He says the lithium is supposed to be covered with mineral oil to keep out moisture and investigators will determine if the packing was done properly.

He says the building was designed to contain such a fire and the blaze was allowed to burn itself out.

The El Dorado Fire Department says air monitors in the city detected no pollution downwind from the fire.

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