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Firefighters douse smoldering wood at pellet plant

Prince George Fire Rescue was called out to the Pacific BioEnergy pellet plant on Monday evening. Alerted to a possible explosion shortly before 5 p.m.
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A Prince George Fire Rescue ladder truck pulls into the Pacific BioEnergy plant on Monday evening.

Prince George Fire Rescue was called out to the Pacific BioEnergy pellet plant on Monday evening.

Alerted to a possible explosion shortly before 5 p.m., firefighters arrived to find a small amount of smoke coming from wood smoldering inside a conveyor system at the plant in the 9900 block of Willowcale Road.

The smoke was quickly doused, there were no injuries and damage was estimated at $50,000, assistant fire chief John Law said.

In a statement, Pacific BioEnergy CEO John Stirling employees' emergency response training paid off as they contacted PGFR immediately following the incident.

“We are very thankful that none of our employees or members of the PGFR team were injured during and while responding to the incident," he said.

He said firefighters cleared the scene by about 8 p.m. to begin receiving fibre deliveries to the plant. He said an investigation by staff and WorkSafeBC is expected to take several days to complete.

"We will make the necessary repairs to the plant and resume production of wood pellets as soon as it is safe to proceed," Stirling said.