RALEIGH, N.C. — A tire fire burned throughout the day Thursday at a salvage yard on Tryon Road in Raleigh.
Officials said the fire started after some men had been shredding tires. At its beginning, the fire sent a huge plume of thick black smoke into the air. The smoke could be seen from as far away as Apex and Fuquay-Varina.
The fire was located near an apartment complex.
"It's pretty scary actually. I think it was going to be the whole building on fire," apartment resident Eleni Iverson said. "The flames were above the trees at the point in time when we came out."
Judy Coley owns the property and leased it to a man who ran the salvage yard. Four years ago, the North Carolina Division of Waste Management ordered that man to clean up the tires.
The agency said he did remove many of them, but then he stopped. The state did not cite him again and officials admit now that it probably did not do enough.
On Thursday, a spokesman for the State Division of Waste Management told WRAL, "We try to be an agency that doesn't shut people down. But in this case, we probably weren't hard enough on him."