May 5, 2014 7:51 PM by Rob Quirk

Drake Power Plant inoperable for now

At a late afternoon press conference in Colorado Springs, Colorado Springs Fire Chief, Chris Riley said that the cause and origian of the Drake Power Plant fire, is unknown. The fire broke out just before 10 on Monday morning at the plant near downtown Colorado Springs. Chief Riley says that 88 firefighters, and more than thirty others in support staff responded to the fire. That's two thirds of the city's firefighting force. Because of the emergency and manpower response, Colorado Springs Police were on "accident alert" status for a time.

Heavy smoke was seen coming from the plant, because so much coal ash had caught fire. There were concerns about hydrogen and the coal dust, so a precautionary evacuation was ordered for about an 18 block area. 62 employees were evacuated from the facility, with just one minor injury, which was treated on scene.

Chief Riley says the building has suffered some structural damage, so investigators are going to wait until Tuesday morning before entering the structure again to begin their search for answers. The plant itself, is considered inoperable. Two other utility plants in the city will be used to supplement power and resources until the plant is fully operational once again.

Fire Chief Riley says they will hold another news conference with the latest on the investigation on Tuesday morning at 9. Stay with News5 on air, and on line for the latest developments.


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