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Overheated Dryer To Blame For Fire At Raleigh Soybean Plant

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Fire investigators in Raleigh have determined the cause of a blaze at a downtown plant Wednesday night.

Investigators believe the fire at the Cargill Soybean processing plant started in a drying tower, and the dryer overheated.

Raleigh fire officials said the fire started around 9 p.m. Wednesday at the plant on Blount and Hoke streets. According to Raleigh Fire Chief Earl Fowler, the fire was contained to a grain elevator on the Blount St. side of the plant.

The fire started at the topof the bean hydrator. Firefighters on two ladder trucks spent nearly 10 hours trying to douse the flames.

The plant never had to close.

The structure, which was packed with beans, continued to burn, making the fire tough to put out, according to fire officials.

The plant's main product is soybean oil. But the owner also sells a byproduct used for livestock feed.

No one was hurt. Fowler said Thursday afternoon that he could not give a damage estimate.