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Racine firefighters were called at 10:20 a.m. Wednesday to Hestia Heat Treat (formerly Racine Heat Treating) in the 1200 block of 8th Street after a member of a construction crew with A.W. Oakes & Son working nearby saw smoke and fire coming from a rooftop exhaust.

Immediately calling 911 at the first sign of smoke at a local manufacturer prevented the business from potentially catastrophic damage. A total of 21 first responders and almost a dozen emergency vehicles were on scene in a matter of minutes.

Firefighter sustains injuries

RFD attacked the fire from the roof and extinguished flames in machinery on the floor. One firefighter did suffer non-life-threatening injuries when he fell taking fire extinguishers to crews on the roof. He was taken to All Saints Ascension for treatment.

According to a press release from Racine Fire Captain Craig Ford, the fire started because a spark from a welding project ignited fine dust particles in exhaust ductwork above a heat-treating furnace. The call to 911 from the construction crew kept the damage to a local area at a cost of around $4,000. Workers had the operation back up and running after firefighters cleared the premises of smoke.

“The immediate call to 911prevented this fire from becoming a catastrophic loss, which could have shut down the business and idled workers indefinitely,” Ford noted in the release.


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