California - News

Apr 21, 2011 9:45 AM

Watsonville warehouse fire to take days to douse

WATSONVILLE, Calif. (AP) Firefighters say it will take days to completely douse a blaze at a Santa Cruz County cold storage warehouse that prompted a shelter-in-place warning.

The four-alarm blaze at Apple Growers Ice and Storage in Watsonville was first reported around 3:30 p.m. Wednesday. Dozens of firefighters from Santa Cruz and Monterey counties were eventually called in to help.

The Santa Cruz Sentinel reports that officials worried about the air quality and the potential for an ammonia leak called thousands of residents within three miles of the blaze around 8 p.m. to advise them to stay indoors.

The 78,000-square-foot warehouse stores apples and vegetables. It has tanks and pipes that contain ammonia used in the refrigeration equipment.

No one was injured in the blaze. Warehouse manager Stephanie Phillips said all eight employees evacuated safely.

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Information from: Santa Cruz Sentinel, http://www.santacruzsentinel.com

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