Fire consumes Marine Electrical Products plant

LEBANON, Mo. – The Marine Electrical Products plant in southwest Missouri was consumed by fire yesterday afternoon with 50 to 60 employees getting out just ahead of the flames, The Associated Press reported in a online story this morning.

Brian Barbo, president of Marine Electrical Products, which manufactures wiring harnesses and fiberglass and plastic consoles and equipment used in the boating industry, said about 50 to 60 employees were inside the building as the fire approached about 1:30 p.m.

“We got everyone out when it got within about 10 feet” of the building, Barbo told AP.

Authorities believe the fire originated in yard waste being burned at a nearby home.

The blaze took several hours to extinguish and the Springfield News-Leader reported in a separate story on its Web site that up to 70 percent of the facility was burned. There were no reports of injuries.

Ben Jones, president of America’s Heartland Economic Partnership, which oversees economic development in the area told the News-Leader that MEP employees up to 400 people.

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