UPDATE: A fire that erupted late Tuesday at the Verso Paper Mill in Wisconsin Rapids is being blamed on lightning, during a storm that passed through the area.
The Verso Corporation issued a statement Wednesday saying that the lightning strike caused a fire at the scrubber stack. Witnesses saw heavy smoke and flames shooting from the building after the fire broke out.
The Wisconsin Rapids Fire Department brought the blaze under control at about 10:15 p.m. Wednesday.
Verso officials say no one was injured and the damage was limited to a non-operating area of the mill.
“We’re incredibly thankful to our on-site team’s professionalism and the Wisconsin Rapids Fire Department for their swift response,” the statement reads.
The facility, the largest paper mill in Central Wisconsin, shut down operations last year, resulting in hundreds of job losses in Wisconsin Rapids. Verso sold the company’s Duluth mill earlier this month.