Many Suffield residents woke up Thursday morning to a haze of smoke and a strong odor generated by a large mulch fire at the transfer station in neighboring Enfield.
A message sent to residents on Enfield's Everbridge notification system stated: "This fire is contained to one mulch pile and is not a hazard to any structures within the town. However, it is generating a large amount of smoke that is drifting in a northerly direction throughout the area. This smoke is non-toxic and the Enfield Fire Department is working to extinguish the fire as soon as possible."
were dispatched to the transfer station on Town Farm Road at 12:18 a.m. The fire solely involved a large pile of yard waste.
"It's just trees, leaves and brush, so it's not hazardous smoke," Enfield Deputy Fire Chief Paul Januszewski said. "None of the transfer station containers are involved."
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White smoke could be seen from more than a mile away, and the strong smoke odor carried much farther than that. "We're getting complaints from Springfield," Januszewski said.
The deputy chief said public works and fire department crews are working together to bring the fire under control.
"DPW will try to re-distribute the mulch piles, so we can get the fire underneath," he said.
Complicating matters is the fact that the nearest hydrant is at the Town Farm Road entrance.
"We've had to run 1,800 feet of hydrant line," Januszewski said. "The water company has been very cooperative in getting us more water quickly."
Thursday's blaze marks the fifth such incident at the transfer station in the last two weeks, Januszewski said.
"Every time we get it put out, it starts elsewhere because it's underground," he said.