NEWELL, W.Va. — Hancock County Sheriff Scott Gittings tells 7NEWS last night the south end of Newell was evacuated for several hours, along with a campground and the Holiday Inn Express within a one-mile radius of the Ergon refinery.
He says though this is the second fire the refinery has seen in nearly two months, this one was more of a ‘potential danger.’
The first calls came in around 10:30 PM Saturday, and Sheriff Gittings says the hardest part was getting enough water to cool down the fire. Fire departments from three states assisted including Jefferson, Columbiana, and Beaver County alone with the Hancock County crews.
The evacuation was lifted by 1:50 AM.
The sheriff says, “It’s odd they’ve had two in a row,” but he trusts the refinery will resolve the problems.
UPDATE 11 a.m., May 30
The Ergon — West Virginia Inc. company issued the following statement about the refinery that occurred in Newell on Saturday night into Sunday morning:
ERGON ANNOUNCES FIRE AT NEWELL, WV, REFINERY
NEWELL, W.Va. — Ergon Inc. has announced that a fire broke out at the Ergon – West Virginia Inc. (EWV) refinery in Newell, West Virginia, Saturday night, May 29. The fire was in a processing unit, and no employees were injured. It was contained with assistance from local fire departments and EWV’s fire brigade.
Refinery employees immediately initiated a controlled shutdown of refining process units. The cause of the fire is under investigation, and Ergon will assess equipment damage and begin coordination of necessary repairs while prioritizing the health and safety of employees and the surrounding community.
“Thankfully, there were no injuries. The damage was contained, and our safety protocol was followed,” commented Emmitte Haddox, Ergon Chief Executive Officer. “We appreciate the prompt response from the fire departments and EWV employees who came to our aid to extinguish the fire.”
EWV, a division of Ergon Inc., produces a variety of paraffinic process and base oils.
Ergon is a group of privately held companies that operate under seven primary business segments: Refining & Marketing, Specialty Chemicals, Asphalt & Emulsions, Oil & Gas, Midstream & Logistics, Construction & Real Estate, and Corporate.
NEWELL, W.Va. (WTRF & AP) – A fire erupted at a petroleum refinery in West Virginia Saturday night.
Photos and videos shared by news outlets show a large blaze late Saturday at the Ergon – West Virginia Inc. plant in Newell. The community is located in the state’s northern panhandle along the Ohio River.
We are sharing a video taken by Kaley Myers.
No injuries were immediately reported.
Transportation officials closed Route 2 near the refinery while crews fought the fire.
The company also experienced a fire at its Newell plant in April. An Ergon news release in April said an unoccupied maintenance shop caught fire but the damage was contained and didn’t involve bulk chemicals
No one was injured in the April fire.
Local media outlets are reporting that this latest fire was put out as of Sunday morning.
Reports also say that some Columbiana County, Ohio residents reported seeing a glow across the Ohio River late Saturday night.
According to reports, officials have not released a cause for the fire.