Iowa County Sheriff Dept. photo of the fire in Marengo.

There’s still some questions about who will pay damages and for the clean-up after the fire earlier this month at Marengo’s C6-Zero facility.

Marengo Police Chief Ben Gray says the company’s insurance policy for the facility wouldn’t be sufficient to take care of a moderate clean up-let alone a large cleanup of this type. “And I will say I was kind of surprised you know for instance that the total amount of money available from the insurance company for the emergency response only $50,000. This is a million-dollar building plus that only has $50,000 worth of emergency response money — that seems under the value that it should be,” Gray says.

Emergency responders alone estimate they have $60,000 in damaged equipment. Friday is the deadline for C6-Zero to submit a plan for the cleanup of the site and runoff to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

Iowa County Emergency Management coordinator Josh Humphrey says normally the company or building owner’s insurance would be on the hook for costs related to an industrial fire. He’s working to make fire departments to try and help them replace equipment.
“Everybody is operational. I shouldn’t say they aren’t operational right now, but their abilities are less than they were a month ago. Nobody comes to a fire and expects to have damaged equipment and then nobody take care of it,” Humphrey says. “Somehow it has to be replaced. This type of an event where you have tons of equipment damaged, it’s not a good situation.”

Humphrey says fire departments are reporting damaged firefighter suits, firehoses, tanks and boots. Because it was a large scale industrial fire, he says more than two-thousand gallons of flame suppressing foam was used valued at $70 per gallon.

(By Zachary Oren Smith, Iowa Public Radio)

Radio Iowa