Hamilton

Brantford rubber fire under control, air monitoring is ongoing, says city

The fire that burned rubber mats and wooden pallets sent a massive cloud of black smoke billowing into the sky.

The road has now re-opened with lane reductions

The Brantford Fire Department asked residents near Henry Street to close their windows as they battled a large fire Sunday. (Amy Tremmel/Facebook)

More than 24 hours after it was first sparked and sent a massive cloud of billowing black smoke into the sky, officials in Brantford say the Henry Street rubber fire is under control.

A tweet from the fire department at 6:42 a.m. says crews remain at the scene to extinguish hot spots that could create some light smoke.

The road re-opened, with lane reductions between Adam Boulevard and Middleton Street just before 9 a.m.

Beating back the blazing fire took the help of emergency officials from across the area, including firefighters from the County of Brant and Six Nations.

In a statement issued around 7:14 p.m. Sunday, mayor Kevin Davis thanked those who came to Brantford's aid.

"The City is extremely grateful for the brave men and women who make up our exemplary Fire Department, Brantford Police, Brantford Brant Paramedics, and to all of the first responders from our neighbouring municipalities including the County of Brant and Six Nations Fire departments who assisted in fighting and containing the fire all day today."

Crews were called to the fire at North West Rubber around 6 a.m. Sunday.

Within two hours, it was contained to a storage yard where the city says large amounts of rubber mats and wood pallets were burning. No injuries were reported.

The flames caused a thick, dark cloud of smoke that could be seen from kilometres away.

The cloud of smoke could be seen for kilometres. (Supplied by Tyler Ryan)

Staff from the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) were called in to monitor air quality.

"While contaminants were found in the plume of the fire (billowing smoke), they measured well below the Ministry's emergency screening values for public exposure," according to the city. "Therefore, at the levels currently measured the MOE does not anticipate health impacts to the public from short-term exposure to the plume from the fire."

Still, people were told to avoid the area, shut off HVAC systems and to close windows and doors as a precaution.

Businesses in the area were also evacuated.

The city says the MOE will continue to check the air quality Monday.  There is no word yet on the cause of the fire or damages.