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Onion fryers catch fire at Oxford Frozen Foods

Nobody was hurt in the incident, damage kept to a minimum
Nobody was hurt in the incident, damage kept to a minimum - Dave Mathieson

Nobody hurt in the incident, damage kept to a minimum

OXFORD, N.S. – Firefighters responded to a fire at Oxford Frozen Foods, Plant 2, Tuesday night.

“When we first arrived on scene there’s was nothing very visible, just some smoke through the ventilation shaft. We thought it might be from the ventilation motor,” said Ken Hickman, deputy fire chief of the Oxford Fire Department. “When we were checking that out, we realized it was a fire in their fryers where they do the onion rings.”

Firefighters from Oxford and three other departments, Collingwood, Springhill and Pugwash, were called to the scene at 9:15 p.m.

Hickman said the alarm system at Oxford Frozen Foods activate the CO2 fire suppression system.

“The fire suppression system that they have inside the plant worked efficiently. We had to knock down a few hot spots in the one area around the fire, other than that, everything was fine.”

With the exception of the fryers, damage was kept to a minimum.

“The only thing that appears to be damaged was the fryers where the fire seemed to have originated,” said Hickman. “The damage to the building itself was non-existent.”

Firefighters left the scene at 11:30 p.m.

“As far as I know, last night when we were done, the employees that were on site could return to work, they just couldn’t use that section of the plant,” said Hickman.

A press release from Oxford Frozen Foods say operations where the fire was located will resume Wednesday night.

Hickman says a more extensive fire at this time of year could put 300 or 400 employees at the plant out of work.

“The C02 system in the plant did its job, we just had to go in and make sure everything was out, and check surrounding areas in the plant to make sure it was safe.”

When fire fighters arrived on the scene, all employees were in their muster areas, and Hickman says the response to the fire proves that the fire contingency plan at Oxford Frozen Foods works.

“Their employees knew exactly what to do and their senior staff assisted us with the layout of the building and stuff like that,” said Hickman. “With that, and surrounding departments, it was a good mutual aid experience.”

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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