Fire at Dalton recycling plant under investigation - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UPDATE: Fire at Dalton recycling plant under investigation

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DALTON, GA. (WRCB) -- Some North Georgia firefighters are thanking the employees of a recycling plant for helping put out a fire that could have done a lot more damage.

The fire broke out at the Columbia Recycling Corporation in Dalton Thursday afternoon.

Dalton Firefighters responded to the Columbia Recycling Corporation on Chattanooga Avenue in Dalton, only to find a dumpster between two buildings caught fire. It was full of discarded carpet.

"The sprinkler system activated and held the fire in check," says Chief Deputy Gary Baggett. "The employees fought the fire prior to our arrival."

"I watched it burn to the ground one time," says Dalton resident Eddie Mowles.

Mowles lives just up the road from the plant.

This is not the first time the plant has dealt with fire. Back in 2007 a worker was killed from smoke inhalation.

"That stuff in there, that lint and stuff is easy to catch. I used to have a carpet mill. I can tell you how easy it is to catch fire," says Mowles.

Baggett says there is no immediate health concerns with the carpet burning. It just has a strong odor.

"Some of that's natural fiber that could be wool or cotton and some of that's synthetic fibers," says Baggett.

He says the damage could have been worse if not for the quick action of the employees.

"There's damage to either side and some damage the insulation on the inside of those structures."

Now the work begins to determine the cause.

"It could have been any number of things that would have put a hot ember into that dumpster and caused the fire," says Baggett.

"As long as nobody got hurt. That's the key. That's the key," says Mowles.

There were no injuries reported in the fire.

It is not clear if the fire is affecting plant operations.

The cause is still under investigation.

Stay with for updates to this story.

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