Firefighters attack large tire fire in Ridgefield (with video)

By Patty Hastings, Columbian breaking news reporter


Updated: March 14, 2013, 7:52 PM


Firefighters battled a large tire fire at a trucking company in Ridgefield on Thursday afternoon. Plumes of black smoke could be seen from Interstate 5.

Crews were dispatched at 1:12 p.m. to 2608 N.E. 209th St., where they found a 50-foot by 50-foot pile of burning truck tires, says Battalion Chief Tim Dawdy, spokesman for Clark County Fire & Rescue. Firefighters kept the fire at bay, preventing it from spreading to a couple of nearby trailers.

Tires, a mix of petroleum and rubber, are difficult to extinguish and burn very hot, Dawdy explained. Putting out such fires requires a lot of foam.

There was also an environmental concern. By letting the fire burn, the air would be polluted. Pouring a ton of water on it, however, means polluted water would leach into a nearby stream.

“It’s a fine line,” Dawdy said.

The Washington State Department of Ecology and Southwest Washington Clean Air Agency went to the fire scene to determine how they would handle mopping up the rubble.

The cause of the fire was not available Thursday afternoon.

View a video of the tire fire on YouTube.