Dietz & Watson Fire: Under Control But Still Burning

The Dietz & Watson fire is now under control. Nearly 200 firefighters, from 44 companies, responded to the South Jersey Warehouse. Sixteen hour later, the blaze continues to burn.

The Delanco, New Jersey, warehouse is a cold storage facility, and distribution center, for delicatessen foods. Known for their sausage, Dietz & Watson is based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The 11-alarm fire is now contained to solar panels on the roof.

As reported by FireEngineering.com, the solar panels were fully charged at the time of the fire. The charged panels created an electrocution risk, which slowed the firefighters’ progress.

Lack of water has also hampered the firefighters’ efforts. As reported by CS Monitor, the crews resorted to using water from a nearby creek, as their supplies ran low.

More water and equipment was delivered to the site this morning.

The Beverly and Edgewater Park Joint Office of Emergency Management have asked residents to remain in their homes with the windows closed. The Burlington County hazmat team is currently assessing air quality.

The heavy black smoke from the Dietz & Watson fire can be seen for miles.

The Dietz & Watson families have expressed their thanks for the outpouring of support. A statement was issued at DietzandWatson.com, thanking the community and emergency personnel.

All other Dietz & Watson production and distribution facilities remain open.

The fire reportedly began on the building’s roof at around 2 pm on Sunday. The fire quickly spread, sending massive amounts of black smoke into the sky.

At least two explosions were reported, and a large portion of the roof has collapsed. Despite extensive damage to the facility, no injuries were reported. The building was unoccupied when the fire began.

The cause of the Dietz & Watson fire is still under investigation. Authorities expect to extinguish the fire before the end of the day.

[Image via Wikimedia]