A fire erupted at the Madaket landfill Thursday afternoon, as one of the hills containing residual plastic burst into flames. The smoke could be seen from miles around the island, and the fumes could be smelled on Madaket Road approaching the dump. The Nantucket Fire Department was on the scene fighting the blaze along with the DPW and members of Waste Options, the company that holds the contract with the town to manage the landfill. The fire was believed to be contained to the one hill, and there were no injuries reported.
There was a smaller fire at the landfill in the same area early Thursday morning around 5 a.m., according to Deputy Fire Chief Sean Mitchell.
The area that caught fire, know as hill 3A, is used for the disposal of residual plastic materials from the landfill’s composting operation - essentially bales of compacted plastic trash.
"Although the fire released a smoky plume while active, the extent of the fire appears initially to have been sufficiently removed from the landfill liner to avoid damage," the town said in a statement. "The fire has caused no damage to property, no injuries and there has not been any impact outside of the immediate area of landfill cell 3A."
The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) has been notified, and an investigation will be conducted to evaluate whether there has been any impact on the landfill’s environmental protective systems.