Residents evacuated during refinery fire

Sunday Times Newspapers

MELVINDALE – Nearly a third of the city’s residents were evacuated Saturday during a fire at Detroit’s Marathon refinery.

No one was injured in the fire that began about 6 p.m. that day at the refinery that occupies some land in Melvindale but authorities took to Facebook to order about 3,000 people to leave their homes.

Nine blocks were evacuated that evening and about 40 residents were sheltered in the city’s civic center, according to published reports.

The fire was extinguished before 9 p.m. that night and residents were returned to their home, but a strong smell continued to linger for days afterwards.

Fire crews from Melvindale, Detroit and Marathon responded to the fire, which is said to have happened during tank fueling.

Fire Chief Steven Densmore did not return phone calls seeking comment for this story by press time.