UPDATE 12/10/2014 10:30 AM
The fire at Marietta Industrial Enterprises Recycling Center closed Route 7 and sent smoke billowing into the air for hours last summer.
The entire facility burned to the ground.
The clean-up went quickly and now we know what's next for that property.
President Scott Elliott says they are ready to rebuild.
There is only one more pile of debris to be approved by the EPA. Other than that, Elliott says the site has been completely cleaned up and approved by the EPA.
He says in the tragedy of the fire, they have found opportunity.
Elliott says when they first built the business park they designed in a rail spur which they didn't use.
They have contacted CSX Railroad and reactivated the process of having that spur installed.
"We have the ability now to instal the railroad spur, utilizing the area where the warehouse and building originally stood. We can now build a spur that can be used for all of the local area businesses for shipping out their finished products and for receiving in raw materials," said Elliott.
Elliott says he is working with different agencies who are supportive of the project.
One of those, the Southeastern Ohio Port Authority says they will do whatever they can to help MIE in this process.
Elliott believes because of the location they will be able to attract a large customer base.
Many steps need to be taken before the plan moves forward. Elliott says he thinks they will be back in operation around 8 months from now.
Ohio State Fire Marshals Office says the investigation into the fire is still open and is currently considered undetermined.
UPDATE 7/18/2014 4:50 PM
The fire is out.
The GreenLeaf Recycling building which caught fire Sunday finally stops smoldering.
Local firefighters worked until 4:00 Thursday evening.
The federal EPA says the property owners then leased a Finley fire truck, track hoes and water supply to finish the job.
The EPA says the samples from the smoke came back clean.
The fire suppression water samples came back with higher chemical levels, but it was all contained on the site and officials say they never made it to the Ohio River and there is no danger to the public.
Friday morning, crews worked to remove that water from the site.
UPDATE 7/17/2014 10:56 AM
The fire still burns and smoke continues rolling along State Route 7, where a recycling facility caught fire Sunday.
Fire departments from Wood and Washington Counties stepped up the foam.
The Marietta Industrial Enterprises building housing GreenLeaf Recycling which caught fire last Sunday is a total loss and the aftermath brought in the federal EPA.
They were called in by the Ohio EPA because of concern about the smoke still rising from the debris.
This is because of spot fires underneath the rubble.
Things are being compacted, creating heat and catching fire again.
The EPA took samples this week and sent them off to a lab.
Air monitoring equipment is set up and right now those levels are reading okay.
They asked that the fire be put out as soon as possible.
"We were also concerned about the run off, the fire suppression water potentially being contaminated and making it out into the Ohio River," says Jeffrey Lippert, with the U.S. EPA. "So we had them put a dike in, and contain that water, and also we collected samples of that water."
Wood and Washington county fire departments are constantly working through the debris with backhoes then spraying the area with compressed air foam so the spot fires stop.
Crews were on scene all day Wednesday, even tanking water from Solvay through fire trucks.
Crews say its been some serious team work.
Washington County EMA Director Jeff Lauer hoped to have it completed by Wednesday evening.
They will be there until the smoke is out or the labs come back, saying there is nothing of concern.
The EPA says the samples should be in sometime Thursday.
UPDATE 7/14/2014 6:00 PM
Scott Elliott, President of Marietta Industrial Enterprises, issued the following statement in regard to the Sunday fire at GreenLeaf Recycling:
"Yesterday a fire started in a building on MIE property that we rent to Greenleaf Recycling, also known as Level 5 Recycling. The fire spread through that building into our main office building. Both buildings were destroyed.
While we have certainly experienced a great loss, our first concern was for the safety and well-being of the Greenleaf employees on site as well as that of our community. We are thankful that no injuries were sustained in this accident.
We want to express our gratitude to the first responders throughout the area who worked hard to manage the emergency and extinguish the fire, protecting additional assets. We are keeping the member of the Dunham VFD who suffered from a heat related illness in our thoughts.
In the coming days, various agencies will begin their investigations into the cause of this situation. We intend to cooperate fully and have also started our own internal investigation. Our goal is to uncover the cause and redouble efforts to ensure this type of accident does not happen again."
UPDATE 7/14/2014 4:50 PM
Two investigations are now under way.
The fire at GreenLeaf Recycling sent smoke into the sky that could be seen for miles.
It resulted in one evacuation and shut down Ohio Route 7 until late Sunday night.
Both the Ohio Fire Marshal's Office and OSHA are conducting investigations.
The fire started just before noon Sunday near diesel tanks, causing them to explode.
It took several hours to get the flames under control.
While the EPA was called in, officials say the fire was never a threat to the public.
Route 7 is now back open for travel.
Fire Personnel are still on scene at the GreenLeaf Recycling Facility to monitor over night.
Investigators say Route 7 will be shutdown until at least midnight Sunday.
You can not travel between route 550 and Blue Knob Road.
That same stretch has been closed to traffic since early this afternoon and it could remain closed into the morning.
ODOT has set up detours around and there are road blocks at Par Mar and Hanna Road.
The road is blocked off because of a hose across the road bringing water in from the river.
All drivers are asked to plan ahead to find an alternative route whether you're driving north from Belpre or south from Marietta.
A fire at the GreenLeaf Recycling facility along Route 7 closed the highway in both directions Sunday afternoon.
The fire, billowed thick black smoke north of the facility near the railroad tracks, close to the Par Mar gas station.
Multiple fire departments, including Barlow and Dunham Township responded.
A Dunham Township firefighter suffered heat exhaustion and was taken to Marietta Memorial Hospital.
By 7:00PM firefighters brought the fire under control.
The Washington County Sheriff's office and State Highway Patrol have the road blocked north and south of the fire.
Sheriff Mincks tells WTAP News, the fire started at about 11:45AM near some diesel tanks and quickly spread, causing them to explode.
Employees tried to put the fire out with extinguishers but were not able to.
A plume of billowing black smoke drifted north of the fire, but officials say there was no threat from it to the River Roar in Marietta or to people.
Firefighters kept pouring water on nearby propane tanks throughout the afternoon.
Dominion gas shut off natural gas service nearby.
Route 7 is blocked south of Elkem and at State Route 550 just outside of Marietta.
The road is expected to remain closed until at least midnight.