ATF activates National Response Team to investigate Gap fire

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County officials are working with Gap to provide any
assistance needed for the 100 workers displaced by
the fire, which did extensive damage

FISHKILL – The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is activating its ATF National Response Team to assist and support state and local authorities in their investigation into the blaze that gutted a portion of one of the two buildings at the massive Gap distribution facility in Fishkill.
The primary goal of ATF’s response team is to concentrate on ATF explosives and fire investigative resource and expertise on large-scale incidents, or on more complex investigations due to the size, scope, or number of victims as a result of an incident.
All employees were evacuated safely at the time of the fire and only one firefighter was injured, with a cut to his lower leg.
ATF spokesman Matthew Myerson said the deployment of the National Response Team does not necessarily mean the fire was arson. The investigation is in its preliminary stages.
“The NRT typically deploys within 24 hours of activation to the most complex explosives and fire scenes,” Myerson said, noting the NRT deployed to the West Texas fertilizer plant explosion in 2013 as well as the national level incident such as the 9/11 terrorist attack on the Pentagon, the Centennial Olympic Park bombing in Atlanta and the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.
Agents from the ATF New York Field Division’s Arson and Explosives Group have been on scene since the onset of the incident and have been assisting with the ongoing investigation.
The ATF’s Forensic Science Laboratory and the ATF Fire Research Lab are also available to contribute to fire investigations.
State and Dutchess County police and fire agencies are currently looking into the origin of the fire.
The fire broke out late Monday night and burned into the late morning hours on Tuesday. Flames shot well into the air and pieces of soot and debris, some the size of the palm of a hand, rained down on Cold Spring, some 10 miles away.