Firefighters battle extra-alarm blaze at West Town pallet factory

- Firefighters battled an extra-alarm fire outside a pallet factory Monday night in the West Town neighborhood.

Crews were called about 11 p.m. to the large fire in the yard of a company near North Damen and West Grand avenues, Assistant Deputy Fire Commissioner William Vogt told reporters at the scene. The company builds, sells and repairs wooden pallets.

Pallets were burning in the yard, and the blaze was upgraded to an extra-alarm fire out of concern for two warehouses and a two-story house adjacent to the yard, Vogt said.

The fire spread to the attic of the house and six residents were displaced, Vogt said. The American Red Cross assisted them with finding shelter.

The fire did not spread to either warehouse and no injuries were reported, according to Vogt. A hazardous materials situation was called after multiple propane tanks in the yard exploded, but the situation has since been contained.

The blaze was struck out by 12:10 a.m. Tuesday, fire officials said.

The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is assisting the Chicago Police Bomb & Arson Unit and the Chicago Fire Department with the investigation into the cause of the fire, according to bureau spokesman Tom Ahern.

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