Multi-alarm fire at Connecticut Scrap in Uncasville

Crews spent Saturday morning fighting fire at Connecticut Scrap on Pequot Road.
Published: Apr. 22, 2023 at 7:53 AM EDT|Updated: Apr. 22, 2023 at 7:00 PM EDT
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UNCASVILLE, CT (WFSB) - Crews spent Saturday morning fighting fire at Connecticut Scrap on Pequot Road.

This was the third fire in two years at the Uncasville scrap yard, and the second time in just six months.

“People dump equipment, propane tanks, and lawnmowers with fuel in it,” said Oakdale Fire Chief Micah Messer. “They bring a lot of hazardous materials in, and it will catch fire.”

That fire spread quickly in a setting like this as it didn’t take long for the entire scrap pile to end up charred.

Messer said, “now we’re utilizing the crane to separate the metals and hit the hotspots.”

DEEP is on scene along with crews continuing to diffuse the smoke from the fire.

Messer mentioned that the crane was crucial in fighting the fire.

The operator was able to crush the scrap, separate it and pull apart the heap for crews to get much-needed water onto the base layers.

As the day went on, the crews no longer needed as many tankers as expected.

At first crews called in as many as 18 tankers to get water from nearby ponds and rivers to dump on the fire.

Messer said, “so last fire we used about 2 million gallons.”

The past November fire took crews about twelve hours to put out.

A little less today but nonetheless persistent for firefighters.

Due to the thick smoke and potentially dangerous chemicals burned, the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection was called in.

“There was no concern for residents in the area, but firefighters around the smoking areas were required to wear an SBCA while they were fighting the fire,” said Messer.

Mutual aid from towns such as Norwich, Old Lyme, and Baltic were cancelled after about eight hours.

Crews from Oakdale and Montville stayed a bit later to put out some hot spots.

DEEP confirmed the air quality as a result of the fire is safe for people in the surrounding area.