Waterbury factory fire could smolder for days - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Waterbury factory fire could smolder for days

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WFSB viewer Chris Dinino sent in this amazing photo of the factory fire in Waterbury. WFSB viewer Chris Dinino sent in this amazing photo of the factory fire in Waterbury.
WATERBURY, CT (WFSB) -

Waterbury firefighters remain at an abandoned factory that is still smoldering three days after a fire started.

Officials said they would remain at the factory in Mill Street for most of Tuesday as crews continue to battle hot spots.

Most of the 86,000-square-foot facility collapsed as a result of the flames, which broke out around 6:30 p.m. Saturday.

The former Nova Dye and Print Factory has been closed for a number of years and has been a popular hangout for the homeless. Waterbury police tell Eyewitness News that in the last decade they've been called to the Mill Street building four times for copper theft, trespassing and a small fire.

The fire chief said the building has been vacant because of issues with the ownership.

According to the Tax Assessor's office the last time anyone paid taxes on the site was back in 1997. Almost $2 million is owed to the city.

The state attorney's office tells Eyewitness News the owners haven't filed the proper paperwork for the property since 1998.

Justino Blza who worked in the factory for years worries about the environmental hazard.

"We used to deal with a lot of chemicals when we dyed the clothing material," he said.

Power outages were reported in the area because of the fire, and as a result, the Industrial Management & Training Institute in Waterbury didn't hold classes Monday morning. However, school officials said power was restored by 11 a.m. and it was announced that afternoon and evening classes would be held as normal.

The fire has been called suspicious by investigators, who said several smaller fires have been reported at the building over the years.

It could be days before investigators are able to make it inside the building to try to figure out what caused the massive blaze.

No one was injured as a result of the fire, and emergency officials said there was no danger to the public as far as air quality and water runoff.

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