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Update: Fire at UP Paper mill in Manistique, Michigan

MANISTIQUE, MI (From news reports) -- A fire at the U.P. Paper LLC storage facility caused significant financial damage Friday, but no one appears to have been hurt in the fire. The Manistique Public Safety Department says it was called to the facility around 3 p.m. after a fire started in one of the storage areas on the property.

Upon arrival, firefighters found the fire burning in one of the five metal canopies where compressed bales of cardboard were being stored along with other items. Each canopy is roughly 150 feet by 115 feet and are approximately 75 feet apart.

The cardboard was being stored as tightly bound bales that weigh an estimated 1,100 pounds each. The MPSD says 1,200 bales were destroyed in the fire, causing damages of approximately $100,000.

Multiple crews were requested from surrounding communities to help battle the blaze as firefighters were on scene for 18 hours. An estimated 1 million gallons of water was used to put out the fire and no injuries were reported.

A criminal investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing and MPSD says "individuals of interest" have been identified, but their identities will not be released pending completion of the investigation. The MPSD did say that the suspects have no affiliation with the company and no one working for U.P. Paper LLC is believed to have been involved with starting the fire.


Earlier Report

MANISTIQUE (From news reports) -- Manistique Public Safety was called out to a fire at the Manistique paper mill Friday afternoon.

The fire at UP Paper, located at 402 West Elk Street in Manistique, broke out shortly before 3:30 p.m. Feb. 9 and affected an area used for outside storage. The facility produces kraft paper from recycled corrugated cardboard boxes. While the exact cause of the fire was not known, it was baled material to be recycled that was ignited at the Number 4 storage pad.

The fire could be seen from the West Lakeshore Drive bridge, which crosses the Manistique River near the mill.

Multiple Delta County fire departments were called to assist at the scene. Among those responding were fire departments from Garden Township, Ensign Township, Nahma Township, and Schoolcraft County's Inwood Township.

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