Investigation underway into two-alarm fire at Daimler Trucks plant

GASTONIA, NC (WBTV) - Gastonia firefighters say the Daimler Trucks plant building may have suffered up to $100,000 in damage after a two-alarm fire Thursday morning.

The fire broke out around midnight along Tulip Drive, just off Highway 321. Crews tell us a spark from a welder was pulled up into the ventilation system, causing flames to erupt. The building was evacuated as firefighters arrived on scene. No one was hurt.

Firefighters say they had an issue getting to the flames. They tell us the fire was in the center of a building that was filled with smoke. They had to use their thermal imaging cameras to get to the flames. Firefighters described the blaze as about the size of a fire truck.

"Once they got the water on it, the immediate knockdown was as normal. And then as the smoke cleared and we started working up to the hotter areas, the hot spots," said Phil Welch, Gastonia Fire Battalion Chief.

The fire was put out in about 45 minutes. All workers were then allowed back in the building. Daimler Trucks officials estimate the fire caused them to lost one million dollars of production time.

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