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WATCH NOW: Up to 100 scrap cars aflame in Friday fire at Alter Metal Recycling

WATCH NOW: Up to 100 scrap cars aflame in Friday fire at Alter Metal Recycling

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No injuries were reported following the outbreak of a large fire Friday on La Crosse’s northside.

Fire at Alter

Up to 100 scrap cars caught fire Friday at Alter Metal Recycling in La Crosse

At approximately 5 p.m. April 2, the La Crosse Fire Department responded to a fire at Alter Metal Recycling, 2410 Hauser St., finding a large fire and heavy black smoke coming from the scrap yard.

Smoke visible from Friday, April 2nd fire at Alter Metal Recycling. Up to 100 cars caught flame but no injuries were reported

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According to a release from Battalion Chief Jeff Schott, due to the volume of scrap cars and limited access to the area, fire crews were required to flow water from master streams and aerial apparatus, using several thousand gallons of water per minute. The fire took almost two hours to control.

Once the fire was controlled, firefighters worked with Alter employees specially trained to operate the necessary equipment to move cars so hotspots could be extinguished. Per the release, an estimated 100 cars were in flames at one point and 24 firefighters were on the scene.

Xcel Energy remotely shut down high voltage transmission lines located directly above the scrap yard. One adjacent business evacuated its building and another neighboring business sheltered employees inside due to heavy smoke.

Investigation into the incident is ongoing.

Assisting were the La Crosse Police, Tri-State Ambulance, Xcel Energy, La Crosse County Emergency Dispatch and the Salvation Army. The Holmen and Shelby fire departments assisted by providing coverage on the North and South sides of La Crosse during the incident.

Emily Pyrek can be reached at


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