On Wednesday [February 12] morning, ADM employees observed smoke close to the receiving area of the company’s corn processing plant in Clinton, the company said. The Clinton Fire Department was called at that time.
“Firefighters investigated and were able to quickly contain and extinguish the small fire they found,” ADM said in a statement released to us. “There were no injuries.”
ADM said it was investigating the cause of the fire and determining the extent of the damage.
“We appreciate the quick response and assistance from the Clinton Fire Department," it added.
Last year, there was a fire at the same Clinton facility; the blaze then occurred in a grain storage silo in January, with the incident resulting in the death of attending firefighter, Eric Hosette. Another responding firefighter Adam Cain, 23, was injured in that same event.
A report by the Iowa Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) following the incident in 2019 determined that ADM provided the fire department with “an incorrect assessment of the explosion risk” and did not offer accurate information on the material in the silo.
“The fire and explosion occurred at Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM) in silo #2 which contained an undetermined amount of gluten feed pellets that had become bridged,” OSHA said in that report. “Although the size and density of the bridge would indicate a gradual formation, ADM claims it was not detected until the silo had completely bridged over.”
The agribusiness was later issued citations and a fine of about $56,000 for hazards present in the facility.