Lockport community pulls together to keep crews cool, hydrated

LOCKPORT, N.Y. (WIVB)- Something as simple as a water bottle has never been more essential, or in such vast supply.

You’ll find heaps and heaps of donated water bottles and jugs at every corner surrounding the site of Wednesday’s massive tire recycling plant fire in Lockport.

While the massive flames have subsided, for the first responders on the ground, work is nowhere near over; keeping them going is a top priority for people in the community.

Friday afternoon, several fire companies were still on scene. In total, 50 pitched in to battle the massive fire.

Red Cross volunteers were still on the ground too, taking this time to remind people to be prepared.

“Now that this event is kind of winding down, our biggest concern is smoke detectors and that. And sometimes when there is a lot of fire and smoke in an area, they can be compromised,” said Joe Camiolo of the American Red Cross.

The Red Cross recommends detectors be replaced at least every 10 years, and that they be tested regularly.

They’re offering free detectors and installation to anyone who needs one.

In addition to fire, crews have been battling extreme heat and humidity. Lockport Fire Chief Patrick Brady told News 4 a water supply for the hundreds of firefighters hasn’t been an issue.

“With the amount of donations that we’ve received here from the public, from stores, local stores, national chain stores, everyone that’s donated…. I can’t tell you how much water we’ve had come to this site,” he said.

The equipment firefighters wear is about 70 pounds dry; mix water and sweat into that, and it’s not easy job.

Chief Brady said working in shifts and making sure everyone takes the time to stay hydrated is key.

But it’s not just the firefighters people in Lockport are looking after.

“We were going around just to the side streets, to the police and other agencies that were assisting and giving them water and making sure they were hydrated and had enough,” Camiolo said.

Residents everywhere but Stevens Street were allowed back into their homes by 7 o’clock Friday night.

The investigation into the cause of the fire is still ongoing.

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