Massive Fire at Chemical Plant Forces Evacuations

Early Saturday morning, a major fire broke out at the Pinova manufacturing plant in Brunswick, Georgia, sending a massive column of smoke into the air.

Mayor Cosby Johnson quickly declared a local state of emergency, and the Glynn County Board of Commissioners ordered those living within half a mile of the factory to evacuate.

The plant, located just over 70 miles north of Jacksonville, Florida, was contained initially but later reignited around 3:10 p.m. Firefighters battled the blaze, ultimately bringing it under control through foam firefighting agents. Thankfully, there were no injuries reported, but the cause remains unknown.

Pinova warned that their polyterpene resin dust should not be touched, eaten, or inhaled, and long-term exposure could result in asthma. Chemicals from their epoxy resin can also cause skin irritation, though burning them causes unknown effects.

Officials from the Jacksonville Fire Department and the Georgia Forestry Commission arrived on the scene to lend assistance. The JFD sent a helicopter and a fixed-wing plane to drop fire retardants to help smother the flames, though the smoke obscured visibility and hampered the effort.

On the ground, the GFC deployed one helicopter and two single-engine tankers but had to ground the aircraft due to the thickness of the smoke and a desire to protect those in the vicinity.

The fire at Pinova’s factory in Brunswick, Georgia, significantly impacted the local area, inspiring an evacuation and a state of emergency.

Fire officials were quick to act and, with the help of the Jacksonville Fire Department and the Georgia Forestry Commission, were able to regain control of the blaze.