Grafton's Wyman-Gordon Had Fire Underneath Acid Tank

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A fire at Wyman-Gordon Thursday ignited under a tank of acid.
A fire at Wyman-Gordon Thursday ignited under a tank of acid. Photo Credit: Richard Price

GRAFTON, Mass.—Welders at Wyman-Gordon accidentally started a fire underneath an acid tank Thursday morning, sending Grafton Fire Department to the scene.

Grafton Fire Chief Michael Gauthier said the blaze, which was started by sparks from the welding, ignited plywood. He said the fire was contained and put out 20 minutes after they arrived.

All available fire units responded at 9:30 a.m. to the Worcester Street plant, which forges titanium, steel, and nickel for aerospace, energy, and military operations.

Although the fire was small, Gauthier said it was important that all units responded.

“You don’t know what you have until you get in there,” he said adding that the size of the plant makes it especially difficult for firemen. 

“We hand-laid probably 500 feet of hose,” he said. “We just had to make sure we got to it before it got to the acid tanks then we would have had acid everywhere.”

A manager at Wyman-Gordon said no one was authorized to comment on the fire.

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Is there an operable fire-suppression system covering the foot-print of the above ground acid tank (s)? Isn't it a law through OSHA, that this type of mitigation MUST be present?

Also, cooking acid ( depending on what type) cold make deadly fumes. This is why firemen should not rush in sometimes to put flames out! They need to know what they are really working on to stay alive! Better not a dead hero!