Canton fire at Convoy Containers that led to evacuation ruled accidental

CANTON, Ohio - Fire investigators say a blaze that led to an evacuation around a closed northeast Ohio factory was accidental.

Hundreds of people in a roughly 20-block area of Canton were briefly evacuated and classes at several schools were canceled for a day when the fire at the old Convoy Containers site released potentially harmful sulfur dioxide into the air two weeks ago.

Fire Chief John Whitlatch tells The Repository that workers who had been removing sulfur blocks in a large vat probably created friction that led to the fire, which destroyed the building.

The sulfur had been used by the container company to harden its packaging and shipping products. Its website indicated it went out of business in 2011.

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