Crews battle fire at MI power plant; no injuries

by Edgar Hayes August 15, 2016, 0:21

The utility reassured customers that there won't be interruptions with their electrical service.

When the St. Clair Power Plant will be back in operations is not clear, according to DTE. DTE Energy said the station's 294 employees would be reassigned to other DTE facilities.

It took as many as 100 firefighters from 30 departments to gain control of a raging fire that broke out at the St. Clair Power Plant in Michigan Thursday evening.

Small radioactive sources used in level gauges are present in piping inside the facility, but pose no threat to first responders or the public, St. Clair County officials stated in a press release.

Westmiller added that fire departments outside of the county have been assisting St. Clair since Thursday night. The St. Clair Fire Department said Friday morning that crews went into the building overnight to look for hot spots and remained at the plant, located along the US border with Canada.

DTE spokesman Pete Ternes said in an email early Friday that the utility plans a statement with an update later in the morning. She said her father was home at the time and heard the explosion at 6:30 p.m. Reports also said that air quality readings were normal outside the power plant.

Crews worked through the night and the fire was out Friday morning, DTE said.

Don Demara, of East China Township, makes a phone call as he watches a fire burn at the St. Clair Power Plant Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016, in East China Township, Mich.

"They blow the stacks occasionally, but this was unusually loud", she told the Times-Herald of Port Huron.

The plant invoked emergency procedures and shut down all units onsite by 7:01 p.m. DTE Energy said employees were evacuated safely and that there were no known injuries at the plant.

DTE President Trevor Lauer told the newspaper the plant is offline but that isn't expected to impact services.

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