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Clarendon Pellet Plant Damaged In Fire

A wood pellet plant in Clarendon has shut down temporarily following a fire that was set off by an explosion in a sawdust hopper.

Officials say a fire was reported at the Vermont Wood Pellet Co. at about 4 a.m. Saturday after the explosion blew off the hopper's protective plating, allowing the fire to spread.

Employees emptied fire extinguishers and a suppression hose on the flames and called the fire department before fleeing the building.

When firefighters arrived, the fire's advancement had been slowed enough so the blaze wasn't out of control. Nobody was injured.

The company's co-owner, Chris Brooks, told the Rutland Herald that damage was so minimal that he expects production to restart by the end of the week.