Jun. 7—A mulch fire at the Pulaski County and City of Somerset Compost Dump Site off East Ky. 914 blanketed the area with smoke Monday but was not deemed to be a danger.
Pulaski County Recycling/Solid Waste Coordinator Danny Masten told the Commonwealth Journal that he first arrived on scene around 10:45 a.m. Monday morning. The facility, which opened last year, handles "green waste" (such as yard waste and storm debris) and had two mulch piles on site — a "completed product" pile and another that needed to be processed through the grinder one more time.
"That pile had gotten pretty dry," Masten said, noting that it was the one which caught fire.
Ferguson Fire Department was dispatched to the composting site to help control the fire, which both Masten and Ferguson Fire Chief Tim Ferrell say was likely sparked by a nearby brush pile which was also burning on site.
Masten noted that the center of the mulch pile wasn't hot — indicating there was no internal combustion. "We always have to monitor for that," Masten added.
"There wasn't too much to it," Chief Ferrell said, adding his crew left the scene around 2 p.m. "All we could do was keep water on it, but it could be smoldering for quite a while."
With rain arriving later that afternoon, Masten was hopeful that the mulch fire would burn out sooner rather than later.