Warehouse collapse prompts request to avoid use of fireworks in area

Warehouse collapse prompts request to avoid use of fireworks in area

Warehouse collapse prompts request to avoid use of fireworks in area

A warehouse containing thousands of whiskey barrels at Sazerac's Barton 1792 Distillery has collapsed just weeks after part of the building came crashing down. No injuries were reported, but it is now not yet known how much (alcohol) our country has lost.

Spalding said crews, including the Bardstown Fire Department, arrived at the scene within five minutes.

He says state and federal officials are on the scene to determine if any whiskey spilled into a nearby waterway.

Owned by Sazerac, the Barton 1792 Distillery in Bardstown, Kentucky contained 18,000 barrels of bourbon and other spirits.

Valerie Nevitt, who lives near the warehouse, said she heard the sounds of wood splitting and then the rumbles of barrels falling upon one another, reminiscent of last month's then-partial collapse. Up to half the barrels inside were affected by the first collapse, it said. Hundreds of fish were killed. In addition to the local fire department and the emergency management agency, the Nelson County Sheriff's Department and the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife responded.

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Television images on Tuesday showed dozens of passengers hanging on to the keeling vessel or bobbing in the water wearing life jackets.

State environmental officials said they will fine Sazerac Inc., parent company of the distillery, up to $25,000 per day after alcohol was discovered to be contaminating the bodies of water.

It's not clear how numerous barrels can be salvaged, local media reported.

Warehouse 30 at the Barton 1792 Distillery, located in Bardstown, was undergoing a wall fix when one side of it first gave out on June 22, dumping the contents of 9,000 barrels of bourbon into two nearby creeks.

The warehouse was constructed in the 1940s, and Sazerac indicates it will likely be several weeks before the cause of the collapse is determined. But the company is already working to build a new warehouse to store whatever can be kept.

According to its website, the Barton 1792 Distillery had 29 barrel aging warehouses on its property before the accident. All of those warehouses passed inspection, as did the warehouses at Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort and Glenmore Distillery in Owensboro, Kentucky.

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