Fire, explosions erupt at asphalt plant in Tacoma, causing damage

TACOMA, Wash. — A fire and explosions erupted at an asphalt plant Sunday morning in Tacoma, causing damage and forcing nearby residents to stay inside, officials with the Tacoma Fire Department said.

At around 4:30 a.m. firefighters were called to the 2200 block of Taylor Way, where a defensive strategy was first initiated because of hazardous materials that were reportedly being stored at the facility.

A hazardous material crew was also called to the scene to determine the kinds of materials that were involved.

A crew with Puget Sound Energy was also called out to help with shutting off the natural gas to area since the shutoff inside the plant was not accessible at one time.

Fire crews eventually got inside the plant and cut off the natural gas supply, as well as a PSE crew who shut off the gas supply, officials said.

According to the Tacoma News Tribune, Assistant Fire Chief Alex Wilsie said the fire was reportedly sparked by failed supply lines to two liquid asphalt silos. One of the lines contained 70 tons of the material.

Crews got the fire under control and later reported that the conditions of the fire were minimal, and smoke had decreased.

An order for northeast Tacoma and Browns Point area residents to stay indoors due to smoke in the area was also lifted.

No injuries or exposures due to the fire were reported.

The fire remains under investigation.