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Reader Megan Hanning-Bean
A reader submitted this photo from near the Wayne Metal Protection Co. fire this afternoon.

Fire department monitoring air quality around Wayne Metal Protection fire

Fort Wayne firefighters are on the scene of an industrial building fire at the defunct Wayne Metal Protection Co. on Wabash Avenue.

Firefighters have been monitoring the air quality in the area of the fire and deemed it safe. They are also letting the fire burn to avoid contaminated water runoff until they know what is inside the building.

Flames could be seen above the building and smoke is visible from downtown.

The site is the former Wayne Metal Protection Co., a defunct metal plating business that has been undergoing a costly clean up of contaminated soil and ground water.

In 2008, IDEM ran a legal advertisement in The Journal Gazette announcing that the company had submitted a cleanup plan. In the summer of 2010, it ran another small announcement saying it had approved the plan and declaring a 30-day comment period.

The Wayne Metal Protection site cleanup began around eight years ago when the company reported contamination to IDEM and applied to be part of the state's voluntary cleanup program, which is designed to speed cleanups without lawsuits and bureaucracy.

The cleanup plan that was approved in 2010 was four years and four months in the making.

The plan called for the removal of contaminated soil from seven areas of the plant property. Also, wells were to be dug to draw out and treat the groundwater, and to draw vapors from the soil.

Police have blocked off side streets leading to the building.

For more on this story see Sunday's Journal Gazette or return to for updates.