Fire at Pallet Manufacturing and Recycling Facility, WI

Risk Logic Inc. (RLI) is a consulting engineering company that provides Loss Prevention Services. Since 1997, we have been working in regions all over the world utilizing the most advanced and current standards.

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June 29th, 2023

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

On the night of May 21st, 911 dispatchers received calls about  flames and dark smoke coming from Oak Creek Wood Products production facility in Singer, WI. A total of over 200 firefighters responded from six different counties.

When first responders arrived, the mulch piles and outdoor equipment were on fire and quickly spreading to the back of the building and into the marshlands. The business, located very close to Interstate 41, had to shut down until the fire was under control.

Image of mulch fire
A large mulch pile spreads fire into the brush close by.

The warehouse sells lumber, pallets, and mulch made from recycled pallets. Rescuers worked through the night, preventing the spread of the fire. It took over nine tankers to put out the blaze. The fire is under investigation by the town of Polk. Thankfully, there were no reported injuries.

The fire reportedly started in a large pile of mulch stored outdoors and grew quickly, spreading to stacks of wood pallets and then extending into two of the buildings on site.

Image of pallet recycling fire
Picture after the firefighters extinguished the warehouse blaze.
Overhead image before the fire showing piles of wood mulch, pallets, and scrap.
Picture before the fire taken from I-41.

Risk Logic engineers can provide advice to help prevent fires at woodworking and storage facilities. Outdoor storage of idle pallets and scrap materials can expose important buildings and equipment. NFPA has guidelines to follow when storing pallets inside and outside. Please read our article regarding idle pallet fire exposure. Risk Logic can recommend how to maintain pallets and other combustibles at a safe distance from your building and other surrounding buildings. The space will all depend on how many pallets are being stored and the type of wall construction.

Contact Risk Logic for to perform a full property loss prevention survey to help ensure your business is safe.