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Sprinkler douses Mercury Paper fire

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Firefighters respond to a fire at Mercury Paper in Strasburg on Tuesday. Dennis Grundman/Daily

STRASBURG -- A sprinkler system that activated and doused a fire at Mercury Paper on Tuesday afternoon spared the facility from potentially devastating damage, Shenandoah County Fire Marshal David Ferguson said.

Several companies were dispatched at 12:14 p.m. to the North Shenandoah Industrial Park for a report of a forklift on fire inside the paper manufacturer's plant. Ferguson said the first responding crews found the forklift and several rolls of paper on fire.

The sprinkler system held the blaze at bay until firefighters contained it minutes after arriving, he said. There was water damage at the northern part of the facility but the fire damage was minimal.

"Due to the heavy fuel load in that building, it proves how valuable sprinkler systems are," Ferguson said.

Along with the county, units from Woodstock, Strasburg, Toms Brook and Middletown responded. Further investigation is needed to determine a cause of the fire, but its origin was at the forklift, Ferguson said.

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