Fire erupts Friday afternoon at East Tennessee corn refinery plant

Fire burns in a smokestack at the Tate and Lyle plant in Loudon, Tenn.

Fire burns in a smokestack at the Tate and Lyle plant in Loudon, Tenn.

LOUDON, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A fire ignited Friday afternoon around 2:30 p.m. at the Tate and Lyle corn refinery plant in Loudon, according to Loudon Police.

Loudon City Police chief James Webb says the fire in one of the plant's smokestacks is under control and no one was injured.

The plant was shut down for scheduled four to six week maintenance period at the time of the blaze, according to Tate and Lyle spokesman Chris Olson.

Officials says the a stray spark from a cutting tool ignited in a take of liquid fiberglass.

The plant was evacuated while firefighters battled the flames from a ladder truck.

According to the company's Web site, the Loudon plant refines corn for animal feed, cereal sweeteners, ethanol, and food starches.

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