Verla fire ruled accidental


NEW WINDSOR – The fire that caused considerable damage to the Verla
International cosmetics manufacturing facility in New Windsor on Monday,
November 20 has been ruled as accidental in nature.

Orange County Fire Coordinator Vini Tankasali said it was determined that
the fire began when static electricity caused ignition of an ignitable
liquid chemical.

He said the incident occurred when an employee was wiping excess product
in the batch room during the manufacturing process. That employee was
wearing protective gear and while the chemical blast totally engulfed
him in flames, he sustained only minor injuries. Another employee was
killed in the fire.

Eight Newburgh city firefighters sustained injuries from a broken leg
to severe facial burns when they entered the burning building after an
explosion and were met by a second explosion.

Over a dozen employees of the manufacturing facility sustained injuries
of varying degrees.


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