Explosion At Alloy Plant Ignites Dangerous Blaze

GARFIELD HEIGHTS, Ohio – An explosion and subsequent fire at a local alloy plant kept firefighters busy on Thursday evening, 19/43 News' Wendy Gillette reported.

The explosion happened at Garfield Alloy on Chain Craft Road in Garfield Heights, just off of Broadway Road.

Police received a report of an explosion and fire at approximately 4:30 p.m.

19/43 News was first on the scene, and found the fire burning strongly (fire pictured, right), partly because of one of the chemicals involved -- magnesium.

The company in question works with alloys, which are a combination of two metals. One of the metals in this case was magnesium, which catches fire when exposed to air and emits toxic fumes when it burns.

Several fire departments assisted in trying to put the fire out, but the magnesium made that more complicated because they couldn't use water. Water could cause a reaction when dealing with a magnesium fire. They were forced to use other methods, possibly foam, dry sand, or a graphite powder.

There were no initial reports of any injuries, and investigators had not yet made an estimate regarding the extent of the damage caused by the blaze.