Firefighters have new ways to fight week old landfill fire - KOTA Territory News

Firefighters have new ways to fight week old landfill fire


After more than a week, smoke still hovers over Rapid City at times because of a fire at the landfill. Not only are firefighters battling the fire but they are also fighting against the wind. On Friday, they used different tactics to try to put out the fire. 

Firefighting efforts continue but the wind has made it challenging. Heat is still present in the pile and the wind fans it. Fire officials says they haven't seen a fire this big in a landfill. They also say this is different than other fires because the fuel has to burn down first for the water to be effective.

Firefighters are using front end loaders, dump trucks, a compressed air foam system, and water tenders to help the situation. Yesterday dozens of neighbors called the fire department complaining about the smoke. Fire officials understand their concern and say they are working very hard.

"Everybody has been working on this pile and it's just the wind has not been helping us. The weather hasn't been helping us and everybody is trying to do the best they can," said Brent Long, Rapid City Fire Department Public Information Officer.

Karl Merbach, Superintendent of the Rapid City Solid Waste Division, says they want people to know it's not garbage that's on fire, but it's grass clippings and leaves.

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518 St. Joseph St.
Rapid City, SD 57701

Telephone: 605.342.2000
Fax: 605.342.7305

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