UPDATE: No injuries, business continues after fire at FPI

Published 9:56 pm Tuesday, January 30, 2024

A weekend fire only temporarily slowed production and resulted in no injuries Saturday at Foam Packaging, Inc.

Vicksburg Fire Chief Derrick Stamps said firefighters responded to the call on Stennis Drive at approximately 1:57 a.m. and worked until almost 7 a.m. before fully extinguishing the blaze.

“(We had) limited access to the actual fire,” Stamps said. “We did cut some holes into the structure to access the most beneficial area to extinguish the fire.”

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While an official cause of the incident has not yet been identified by the Fire Marshal’s office, Foam Packaging, Inc. owner Debra Isaac said a lightning strike could be the culprit and praised the quick work of Vicksburg Fire Department and other emergency workers responding to the call.

“They believe a lighting strike caused it,” she said. “But, I just have to say, our fire department is fabulous. They were quicker than lightning themselves, almost, getting here. Battalion 1 is just outstanding. I can’t say enough about what they did.”

Stamps said his crew worked for a number of hours to locate, access, and extinguish the fire.

“Upon arrival, crews confirmed that everyone was out of the building and then made entry into building 2 to locate the fire,” he said. “There were a couple of pallets loaded with foam cartons, approximately 12 feet in height, which appeared to have started to burn from the top of the packaging.”

Stamps said crews “worked tirelessly” and needed to utilize more than 50 self-contained breathing apparatus bottles and “a lot of man hours” throughout the duration of the approximately five-hour-long response.

Isaac said operations at the plant have since resumed partially and she is looking forward to quickly getting back to full-service status.

“We are up and running a section of our building now,” she said Tuesday afternoon. “We just began production again. We do have some loss of inventory, because it’s a warehouse. But, we are just blessed that everything worked like it did. Our sprinkler systems and alarm systems all worked. Our supervisors were outstanding, as were all of our associates that followed directions and stayed calm. Both the fire chief and the fire marshal complemented us on preparing our people.”

Isaac said shipping at the plant has not stopped and thanked the company’s customers for their patience and concern as Foam Packaging restores full-service.

“We will begin another process right now,” she said Tuesday. “And we look forward to being here another 53 years.”

Vicksburg Fire Department Ladder 15, as well as crews with Emergency 7 and Emergency 8 and Fire Marshal 80 also responded to Saturday’s call.