Warehouse in Sumter reignites on Monday afternoon


Sumter firefighters continued to contain the fire at Hodge Distribution & Logistics' warehouse on Hauser Street after contents of the building reignited on Monday afternoon.

Sumter Fire Department received a call about the resurfaced flames about noon and arrived to see materials near the center of the site on fire. Thick, black smoke could be seen billowing over the Lafayette bridge from downtown again.

Battalion Chief Joey Duggan said the blaze absolutely reignited because piles of flammable materials - plastic, carpet fibers and what appeared to be cloth - were still hot from Friday's fire. There will continue to be hot spots given the size of the structure, he said.

Duggan said firefighters have been monitoring the site in shifts and spraying water periodically since the massive fire was extinguished - at least on the surface - on Friday evening.

Unfortunately, it could take up to a week before the fire is finally put out because of the size of the site and amount of flammable materials, he said.

Monday's fire required a smaller crew and fewer resources - about eight firefighters, an excavator, one ladder truck and a ground hose - compared to nearly 90 firefighters and three ladder trucks on Friday.

The more recent flames were extinguished just before 1 p.m., and firefighters placed two hoses on the site to flow water over potential hot spots before heading back to their respective stations.

Crews will continue to check the site and water flow as needed, Duggan said.

He said fire investigators are still working to determine a cause of the original fire.