Scott Waste transfer station operational after fire, water being tested

AUBURN, Ky. (WBKO) -- An Auburn waste transfer station caught fire last week, finally burning out on Friday.

It was back in operation by Wednesday.

A neighbor not far from the Apex Transfer Station recalled the thick, dark smoke caused by the blaze.

"It was heavy, you know, even just driving through after a couple days, it was still heavy," Brittany Marsillett said. "And all through the night, you can hear stuff exploding, like loud explosions."

Multiple departments responded to the fire before letting the flame burn itself out.

"They decided to go ahead and stop at a certain point because with trash burning -- they didn't want to risk anyone's life getting in there and digging trying to put out a trash fire," said Nathan Cockrill, solid waste coordinator for Logan County.

The exact cause of the fire is still under investigation, but Cockrill says fire officials had shared their speculations.

"They told us a front-end loader was loading garbage, and might've been a little bit too close to the garbage on accident Monday evening -- last Monday evening. And late into the evening, it caught some stuff on fire," Cockrill said.

The transfer station will be offering a free dump day on Saturday, June 15 from 8 a.m. to noon.

According to John Mura, director of communications for the Energy and Environment Cabinet, investigators from the cabinet's Division of Water "took samples from the Shaker Springs, looking to see whether any contaminants had entered the water body."

Mura said potential contaminants could be smoke-borne or be caused by runoff.

Air quality was not being tested.

"We do that some times, but in this case, we don't feel it's necessary or appropriate to test air quality because of the rural nature of the area and the dispersion," said Mura.

"Based on the knowledge of the fire, we don't think that it was as of such a volume that we needed to take air samples, or that it would affect nearby residents," he explained.

They're continuing to investigate an algal bloom they found, a type of growth on water that can be toxic to drink.

"We don't think it's related to the fire, however," said Mura.

"We think that the situation has been handled appropriately. We're doing prudent retesting but that I wouldn't think that there's any undue cause for alarm," said Mura.

Mura said they don't believe that people would be ailed somehow by the fire but if they believe they are experiencing effects related to it, that they should contact their physician or the health department. If you have any pertinent information related to the fire, you should contact Kentucky's Energy and Environment Cabinet.

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