A small flash fire caused minor injuries to two employees, damaged a piece of equipment and shut down part of local industry NyloBoard’s manufacturing plant Thursday morning, but overall fire and company officials said the damage was minimal.
Covington Fire Marshal Tony Smith said he is meeting with company officials tomorrow to approve a fix to a piece of equipment to prevent future fires. A portion of the plant, which is located at the intersection of Alcovy Road and Ga. Highway 142, will remain closed until the proposed solution is approved by Smith.
The fire occurred around 11:15 a.m. in a paint booth, which Smith said is used to apply color to the boards created by NyloBoard. The fire is believed to have been caused a static electricity charge that mixed with one of the chemical cleaning agents in the sprayers.
Smith said the company will need to make a process improvement to prevent the issue from happening again.
The fire ended quickly once the small amount of combustible material burned off, Smith said.
Two employees working near the paint booth received minor injuries, but both were treated by EMS on the scene and released.
Smith said the plant manager told him they would only keep a small number of core employees at the plant and shut down the rest of the plant until an approved solution was reached.
Smith said he didn’t know the value of the equipment, but estimated the damage to be between $5,000 to $10,000m though he said the company’s main loss would come from losing production time.
NyloBoard is committed to safety. We have stringent procedures in place to minimize risk and to provide a healthier and safer environment for our employees and the community. NyloBoard is working with the Covington Fire Department Fire Marshall to prevent any future incidents,” said spokeswoman C. Nicole Hill.
NyloBoard uses recycled carpet fibers to create composite building materials, including boards for decks and sheeting for walls, floors and roofs, and promotes its green technology which prevents otherwise wasted carpet from being placed in the landfill. The company’s products, which are alternatives to wood and PVC, are impervious to water, mold, mildew and termites, according to the company. NyloBoard is based out of Covington.