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Fire sends thick plumes of smoke into Spokane Valley sky

Fri., April 24, 2009, 6:18 p.m.

Firefighters are battling a blaze at a scrap metal recycling company in Spokane Valley.

The fire at Dickson Iron and Metal, 907 N. Dyer Road, already has destroyed a large excavator and is continuing to burn in a large pile of scrap metal. Thick plumes of black smoke are pouring across nearby Interstate 90, reducing visibility and causing traffic slowdowns.

“We’re going to be here for a while,” said Spokane Valley Fire Capt. Jeff Bordwell. “We’re going to have to dig into the pile to make sure the fire is out.”

Authorities believe the scrap pile also contains rubber, which would explain why the fire is producing so much heavy black smoke.

The fire was reported about 6 pm. by a nearby business owner. Bordwell said the fire is contained but will take several hours to fully extinguish. No estimate was available this evening for the value of the destroyed excavator.

Also unclear is how the fire started, though investigators have yet to begin probing the scene.

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