UPDATE Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Officials say there is heavy damage to the buildings at the Tunnel Ridge Prep Plant.

Crews on the scene say workers at the Prep Plant were working on renovation and when they went to lunch, that’s when a fire broke out.

Officials say the conveyer belt caught on fire from the building and then the fire went to the belt line.

Firefighters were going in eight at a time, according to officials.

Officials also say firefighters lost the plant water source for a short time and that’s why tankers were called in.

The fire was put out at 2 am, according to officials on the scene.

Crews on the scene during the first alarm included: West Liberty, Clearview, and Windsor Heights. Crews on the second alarm were Beech Bottom, Mckinleyville, and Franklin.

Officials applauded crews for their fast actions.


UPDATE: Monday, March 27, 2023 11 p.m.

The fire at the Tunnel Ridge Prep Plant on Short Creek Road in Ohio County is now under control, according to Ohio County EMA Director Lou Vargo.

Vargo says all workers and firefighters are safe and accounted for.

He says there is enough water on site now, so the tanker task force that was assembled from Brooke, Ohio, and Belmont Counties to fight the fire is being cleared.

Two engines from the West Liberty and Clearview Fire Departments will remain on the scene for any potential hot spots.

OHIO COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF) — Ohio County EMA Director Lou Vargo confirms to 7News that there is a major fire at the Tunnel Ridge Prep Plant on Short Creek Road.

West Liberty Fire Department is on its second alarm and the tanker task force has been activated from Ohio and Brooke Counties in West Virginia and Belmont County in Ohio, Vargo said.

Vargo says the cause of the blaze is not yet known, but there was construction underway.

Vargo advises that Short Creek Road is being blocked for tanker traffic.

Stay with 7NEWS and WTRF.com for updates on this developing story.