Incident Name: Mt. Poso Cogen Fire
Incident Time: 8:04 a.m.
Incident Date: 05-31-2014
Incident Location: 36000 block of Famoso Rd., Bakersfield, CA
Incident Type:  Structure Fire
Resources Used: 3 Engines, 1 Patrols, 2 Other Equip.
Number of Personnel: 14
Assisting Agencies:


Cause:  Mechanical Failure


Structure Fire - Mt. Poso Cogen

Current Situation: Break of an auger in a surge bin causes a backup and fire in bio-product in the Mt. Poso Cogen plant.

At 8:04 a.m., May 31, the Kern County Fire Department received a call requesting assistance for a fire in a surge bin at the Mt. Poso Cogen Plan in the 36000 block of Famoso Rd.  On arrival, firefighters were confronted with a fire of "woodchips" and other bio-products in an elevated surge bin.  The bin was approximately 100 feet above ground level.  It is used to guide bio-fuels from a conveyor belt into the boiler to create electrical energy for Kern County.  Plan personnel reported that an auger, a screw like device that moves the material, in the surge tank, had broken causing a backup of material.  They speculate, that the broken part had caused enough heat to cause the fire. 

Plant personnel were trying to control and extinguish the fire on the arrival of KCFD units.  However, problems with water pressure hampered their efforts.  Firefighters began efforts to boost and supplement water to the plant.

The auger was replaced and plant personnel were able to begin moving the bio-product out of the surge bin.  Firefighters stood by to assist as needed.  Ladder Truck 65 was raised to bring hose lines and boost pressure to plant systems.

There was no loss to the property, no injuries, and no damage.


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