Downstate Madison, Illinois fire prompts disaster proclamation | Video

Madison fire broke out in metal recycling company, sending plumes of smoke into air seen from St. Louis

ByABC7 Chicago Digital Team via WLS logo
Friday, August 12, 2022
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Gov. JB Pritzker issued a disaster proclamation after a large fire broke out in Madison County, Illinois earlier this week.

MADISON, Ill. (WLS) -- Gov. JB Pritzker issued a disaster proclamation for two downstate Illinois counties Thursday to assist in recovery efforts after a large fire at a recycling facility broke out the day before.

Thick clouds of smoke swirled around parts of Illinois Wednesday.

A fire broke out in a metal recycling company building in downstate Madison.

But smoke from the blaze was seen as far away as St. Louis and Spanish Lake.

Firefighters from several area departments responded to the scene.

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There has been no word yet on the cause of the fire.

In 2020, the Madison Fire Department responded to the same building for a wall collapse and multiple explosions.

Pritzker's disaster proclamation for Madison and St. Clair counties after the fire at the Interco recycling facility grants the state the ability to expedite the use of resources to help affected communities recover.

"I'd like to praise the first responders who were on the scene quickly and thank them for their ongoing efforts to extinguish the fire," Pritzker said in a statement. "To support our communities in the Metro East, my administration has acted swiftly to utilize every available resource, accelerating the recovery process and providing relief for those affected by this incident."

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On Thursday evening, Pritzker's office said firefighting efforts were expected to continue for up to 48 hours.

At least one person was injured at the Interco facility, and the potentially hazardous nature of the smoke and soot from the fire prompted local officials in the city of Madison to issue a request that people within a 1-mile radius of the factory should shelter in place.

The situation is still evolving, and the weather forecast indicates prevailing winds mainly to the south and southwest through mid-day on Friday, generally in the direction of St. Clair County.

These circumstances give rise to a threat of additional damage, injury, loss of life or property resulting from the fire, Pritzker's office said.

The proclamation is effective immediately and will remain in effect for 30 days.

CNN contributed to this report.