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Scrap metals, Styrofoam catch fire at Woodinville recycling plant


RecyclingMonster - Thick smoke billowed for miles from Woodinville to North Seattle after a huge pile of scrap metal, rubber and Styrofoam caught on fire at a recycling plant Wednesday afternoon.

Firefighters said the fire broke out at the Schnitzer Steel plant in the 23700 block of 63rd Ave SE about 20 minutes after workers left for the day.

It spewed smoke that Matthew Mueller and Ryan Harris saw in the distance, so they called 911.

“It got like way out of control and it was billowing an insane amount,” said Matthew Mueller. “It almost looked like a volcano, if you look down it looks like a pile of trash and the top was glowing orange and red embers with billowing black smoke on top.”

“A definitive smelled, something you don’t see every day,” said Ryan Harris.

Firefighters tackled the fire from above and on the ground with the help of heavy equipment from the plant tearing the pile apart.

The heavy smoke blew over State Route 522 and 63rd Avenue, forcing drivers to slow down while troopers and deputies directed them.

First responders said how the fire started will be a challenge to find out.

“The fire marshal will come out to try and investigate but with the method we’re trying to use, tearing it apart, like you said, it’s going to be difficult to determine the cause,” said Heather Chadwick with Snohomish County Fire District 7.

No injuries were reported. Snohomish Fire District 7 urged people to stay out of the area and close windows.