Claremore Daily Progress

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November 23, 2013

Firefighters respond to structure fire at Burgess-Norton building

CLAREMORE —

Claremore firefighters responded to a structure fire Friday morning at the former Burgess-Norton Manufacturing Plant, 2400 E. Anderson Boulevard.
Firefighters arrived on scene around 9 a.m., after a metal panel from the buildings interior wall caught fire.  Contract workers were in the process of renovating the vacant site when the fire occurred, said Claremore Fire Chief Sean Douglas.
“The workers were using a cutting saw to cut a metal pipe. There seemed to be some type of oil residue inside which caught fire,  and then caught the attached wall on fire,” said Douglas.
Claremore Fire Marshal Jason Crandall said with years of grease, soot and dust accumulating on the panels, sparks from cutting and welding can turn dangerous. 
Within several minutes, firefighters had the small fire under control. Command was terminated around 11 a.m., following a safety check of the perforated wall to make sure the flames had been put out. 
A similar fire occurred on the back wall of the facility in 2008 when workers had to cut through an unused crane to disassemble it, said Crandall.
The facility is currently owned by the Claremore Industrial and Economic Development Authority (CIEDA) and the City of Claremore, who co-signed on the loan to purchase the building.  
The city and CIEDA are in the process of working with a potential buyer for a lease contract, before they ultimately purchase the facility, said Claremore City Manager Jim Thomas.  The former Burgess-Norton Plant has been vacant since 2009, when Burgess-Norton Manufacturing ceased operations because of business conditions in the automotive and commercial truck industry.  
The plant was used to manufacture piston pins for several key industrial markets.

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