Worth Co. cotton gin fire started by spontaneous combustion - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Worth Co. cotton gin fire started by spontaneous combustion


We now know the cause of a fire at a Worth County cotton gin that caused more than a half million dollars in damage.

Worth county Fire officials ruled it as spontaneous combustion.

Officials say cotton is like another one of Georgia's top commodities, peanuts.  When the right amount of moisture meets the right amount of heat, it can lead to a spontaneous combustion.

The fire started around 2:30 Thursday afternoon at the Worth Cotton Gin on Highway 82 right outside Sylvester.

Crews were on the scene for hours putting out hotspots at this warehouse that held 2,200 tons of cotton seeds.

The Owner of the Gin did not want to go on camera, but told us the damage is in the $600,000 dollar range.

Fire officials say this type of incident isn't as unusual as you might think.

"Normally about every three or four years we have a fire a one of the warehouses where seeds are held just because of the combustion. If there's any little bit of moisture, the moisture itself will make it go through a heat on a hot day and then it will combust," said Worth County Fire Department Captain John Graddy.

There were about 8 or 9 workers on site at the time of the fire, no workers or firefighters were hurt.

The owner of the gin told us those cotton seeds are insured.

An insurance adjustor will survey the damage early next week.


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