Dalton fire chief wants fines imposed on carpet businesses that don't practice fire safety
A North Georgia fire chief is taking steps he said will make carpet factories safer in his community.
This comes after a fire Monday at Victor Carpet Mills in Dalton.
Records show fire fighters have responded to seven fires at that location in the last year, including Monday's fire.
No one was hurt in the latest fire, but Dalton Fire Chief Todd Pangle said that's too many for one place and now he wants businesses to be fined if they are not taking steps to prevent fire from breaking out.
The thick, black smoke outside Victor Carpet Mills on Coronet Drive interrupted the Monday route for several in Dalton, including Michael Carnes.
"Oh God, it grew from just a little bit of smoke to huge!" he said.
He was busy with a landscaping job across the street when he noticed the smoke and started recording with his cell phone.
Chief Pangle said the fire started from ground up scraps of rubber that were waiting to be cooled down by nearby business, Avanti Environmental Group.
"If that process isn't done in a correct amount of time, it will generate enough heat that it will actually self combust, which is what happened yesterday," Pangle added.
Pangle said the owner of Victor Carpet noticed the rubber had not been processed on Sunday and called the fire department to check the material with thermal imaging cameras.
"Sunday afternoon they moved that material outdoors. Which, if they had not done that, Monday morning when this fire started, it would have been inside and been a whole different outcome," he added.
Pangle said his department has responded to fires 13 times in the last three years between both businesses and now wants to impose fines on businesses that aren't practicing safety.
"Looking at that number of fires, with this process, some steps should be taken to prohibit that in the future," he said.
Channel 3 reached out to both businesses for comment. We will share their responses when we receive them.
The owner of Victor Carpet Mills told the Dalton Daily Citizen he is done working with Avanti Environmental.
Pangle said he plans on presenting an ordinance to the Public Safety Commission next month, if it passes it will then go to the City Council for approval.
Stay with Channel 3 for updates on this story.