Military Gear & Army Surplus Gear Blog

Portions of Holston Army Ammunition Plant operational following fire, explosion

Portions of Holston Army Ammunition Plant operational following fire, explosion


AMMUNITION PLANT IN KINGSPORT THIS MORNING… BUT PARTS OF THE PLANT ARE OPERATING TONIGHT. GOOD EVENING –I’M JOSH SMITH… AND I’M SARA DIAMOND. THAT’S THE LATEST FROM A HOLSTON ARMY AMMUNITION PLANT SPOKESPERSON. PLUMES OF SMOKE COULD BE SEEN BEHIND THE HEAVILY GUARDED OF THE SIX-THOUSAND ACRE FACILITY THAT’S A MAJOR SUPPLIER OF EXPLOSIVES TO THE DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE. THE FIRE STARTED AROUND EIGHT THIS MORNING. THE ARMY SAID THE DECISION WAS MADE TO LET THE BUILDING ON FIRE BURN TO THE GROUND TO AVOID ENDANGERING FIREFIGHTERS. THEN JUST BEFORE NOON – EXPLOSIONS COULD BE HEARD AND FELT MILES AWAY FROM THE PLANT. AND THAT TRIGGERED A WAVE OF CALLS AND QUESTIONS POSTED ON THE WJHL FACEBOOK PAGE MANY SAID IT SHOOK THEIR HOMES AND WONDERED WHAT WAS GOING ON. OTHERS WERE SO CONCERNED – THEY CALLED 9-1-1. TYPE SOUNDBITE HERE AN ARMY SPOKESMAN SAID THE PUBLIC WAS NEVER IN DANGER BECAUSE OF THE EXPLOSIONS… SO NO PUBLIC ALERT WAS ISSUED. NEWS CHANNEL 11’S CHANTEL BATISTA CONTINUES OUR LIVE COVERAGE TONIGHT FROM KINGSPORT. JOSH SARA TONIGHT – ALL QUIET AT THE PLANT IN KINGSPORT WHERE EARLIER TODAY WE LEARNED THERE WERE NO EVACUATIONS… BUT A SPOKESMAN FOR B-A-E – THE COMPANY THAT OPERATES THIS MASSIVE FACILITY FOR THE ARMY – SAID EMPLOYEES IN THE IMMEDIATE AREA OF THE BUILDING SENT TO WHAT ARE CALLED “ON SITE SAFE HAVENS.” DIANNE CAMPBELL KINGSPORT, TN “THE FIRST THING I THOUGHT WAS IS THAT AN EARTHQUAKE BECAUSE IT KEPT SHAKING.” A FIRE AT HOLSTON ARMY AMMUNITION PLANT WAS REPORTED AROUND 8AM AND HOLSTON OFFICIALS SAY THE BEST OPTION WAS TO ALLOW THAT BUILDING TO BURN TO THE GROUND. FOLLOWING THAT DECISION–AROUN D NOON– CAME AN EXPLOSION… JIM EVERHART ASSISTANT CHIEF OF KINGSPORT FIRE DEPARTMENT “THEY HAD MATERIAL THAT LED OFF OR IGNITED AND THAT’S WHAT THE EXPLOSION WAS. AT THE TIME OF THE EXPLOSION NO ONE WAS IN HARMS WAY OUR CREWS WERE HALF A MILE AWAY.” THE KINGSPORT FIRE DEPARTMENT RECEIVED A CALL FROM THE KINGSPORT DISPATCH CENTER AROUND 8:30 AND WAS ON STAND-BY ON SCENE BEFORE THE EXPLOSION OCCURRED. THAT EXPLOSION WAS HEARD MILES AWAY–INCLUDING IN THE NEIGHBORHOODS SURROUNDING TO THE PLANT. DAVID CAMPBELL KINGSPORT,TN “WE MOVED HERE IN 2006 AND I DO NOT REMEMBER HEARING ANYTHING COMPARABLE TO THIS, EXPERIENCING ANYTHING COMPARABLE TO THIS. WE LIVED IN EARTHQUAKE COUNTRY.” CONCERNED KINGSPORT RESIDENTS CALLED DISPATCH TO REPORT THE LOUD BOOM. AND PHONERS: CALLER: “I’M CLASSING FROM OREBANK ROAD AREA AND I HEARD A HUGE EXPLOSION THAT KNOCKED SOME THINGS OFF THE SHELVES IN MY HOUSE.” DISPATCH: I UNDERSTAND MA’AM, THERE WILL BE A FEW MORE BUT EVERYONE IS SAFE. CALLER: EVERBODIES??? O.K. DISPATCH: YES, MA’AM CALLER:THANK GOD. COMMUNITY MEMBERS WERE NOT NOTIFIED OF THE FIRE OR THE EXPLOSION…. KINGSPORT OFFICIALS SAY WHEN IT COMES TO GOVERNMENT PROPERTY, COMMUNICATION WITH CITIZENS IS A BIT DIFFERENT. BARRY BRICKEY KINGSPORT FIRE DEPARTMENT EDUCTION OFFICER “WELL ANYTIME THERE IS AN INCIDENT, THERE’S ALWAYS QUESTIONS. WHATS GOING ON? IT’S THE RESPONSIBILTY OF BAE BECUASE IT IS THEIR INCIDENT TODAY AND SO THEY WERE THE ONE’S TAKING CARE OF THE INFORMATION.” ACCORDING TO THE KINGSPORT FIRE DEPARTMENT REVERSE 9-1-1 NOTIFICATIONS ARE ONLY ISSUED UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES. BARRY BRICKEY KINGSPORT FIRE DEPARTMENT EDUCATION OFFICER “WELL ANYTIME THERE IS A REVERSE 9-1-1 THAT WOULD GO OUT THAT WOULD MEAN THAT THERE IS AN INCIDENT THAT WOULD IMMEDIATELY AFFECT SOMEONE IN A CERTAIN AREA IN THE CITY AND SO THERE WAS NO NEED FOR A REVERSE 9-1-1 BECAUSE THERE WAS NO EMINENT DANGER TO THE PEOPLE JUST OUTSIDE OF B-A-E. THE CAUSE OF THE FIRE AND EXPLOSION ARE STILL UNKNOWN… AGAIN – LATE WORD FROM HOLSTON ARMY AMMUNITION IS THAT THE FIRE IS STILL BURNING… PARTS OF THE PLANT ARE OPERATIONAL… AND PEOPLE IN IMPACTED AREAS HAVE BEEN NOTIFIED BY THEIR EMPLOYER. REPORTING LIVE IN KINGSPORT CHANTEL BATISTA NEWS CHANNEL 11 IN YOUR CORNER.


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