Sergeant Bluff fire chief Anthony Gaul says his department had issues after being called out to a fire at the Gelita Plant in the Port Neal industrial area at 2:15 A.M. “We had hydraulic lines in certain equipment that started to react very slowly. Of course when you have water out anywhere in this — we ended up with very icy surfaces that we were trying work on,” Gaul says. “We tried to rotate personnel in and out so that we didnt’ get anyone too exposed to the elements.”
He says they got a second call at Gelita as they worked on the first fire as another room filled with smoke in the middle of fighting the first fire. A statement from Gelita says the fire began in a heating system blower on the roof of the production facility. The state fire marshal has been called in to determine the exact cause.
The company says production has continued and there were no injuries from the fire.
(By Woody Gottburg, KSCJ, Sioux City)