Federal investigators say this month's fire at a hazardous waste storage plant in Apex could have been prevented if the plant had a fire suppression system.
Investigators for the Chemical Safety Board say the fire began as a small blaze in an area where pool chemicals and other material were stored at E-Q Industrial Services. But it grew and spread to an area where flammable wastes were kept.
The report says a six-inch curb separated the two areas and was designed to keep liquids from spreading. The company's fire plan was to have workers extinguish blazes, but no one was at the plant when the fire started.
The board will conduct a full investigation of the fire, which could take up to a year. E-Q spokesman Robert Doyle says the company will endorse any measures that make the plant safe.
The fire led to the evacuation of thousands of Apex residents. The plant was destroyed.