No hazardous materials detected from Becker recycling plant fire, more test results expected Friday

Authorities say no hazardous chemicals have been detected thus far from a recycling plant fire in Becker, but more test results are expected Friday.

The fire at Northern Metal Recycling Plant has entered its fourth day burning on Friday. A passerby reported seeing the fire at the plant at about 2:30 a.m. Tuesday, and police said the fire appeared to have started "in a debris pile of crushed up vehicles" in the plant's lot.

On Friday morning, Becker police said the fire flared late Thursday night, sending more smoke over the city.

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Tests by the Minnesota Hazardous Materials Emergency Response team showed their sensors could detect no hazardous materials, police said. It's the third time testing has been done in Becker and surrounding areas with that result.

Minnesota Pollution Control Agency also installed sensors at multiple areas Thursday with initial readings indicating normal levels consistent with background levels of air not in the plume area downwind from the fire, police said. Lab-tested air samples that would detect a wider range of chemicals than the sensors were also taken Thursday and results are expected Friday.

However, authorities said the health advisories previously issued remain in place, and anyone experiencing health problems should immediately contact a doctor.