Turku Blaze Threatens Biogas Plant

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Credit: Sami Kallio / Tilannehuone

A large fire near Turku briefly threatened a biogas plant Wednesday afternoon, until dozens of fire fighters brought the blaze under control.

Officials say the fire started in a 50-tonne pile of waste wood, which also contained other combustible materials, at the Topinoja landfill site six kilometres from Turku city centre. A large cloud of black smoke could be seen up to 10 kilometres away as the fire grew.

Twenty fire engines were called to the scene, including from Turku airport, as emergency responders battled to keep the flames from spreading to the nearby Gasum biogas plant. Crews sprayed the biogas storage units with water to keep them cool, and excavated a ditch to act as a fire break.

Local residents have been advised to stay indoors and keep windows closed to protect against any toxic smoke from the landfill fire.

Fire department officials say they expect the blaze to continue burning late into Wednesday night.