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7 hospitalized after JEA lift station fire

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Five roofers and two JEA staffers were taken to a hospital after a fire at the JEA sewage pumping station on the Southside on Tuesday morning, which forced the evacuation of the building.

Jacksonville Fire-Rescue said the workers were putting hot tar on the roof when it ignited a fiberglass pipe at the building at 10400 Bradley Road, off St. Johns Bluff Road.

All seven were exposed to fumes from the burning fiberglass, and taken to the hospital in stable condition.

Firefighters doused the fire on the roof, but discovered a smoldering fire in the lift station's piping inside the facility. It's unknown what was burning, either insulation or grease and sludge.

Firefighters said no hydrogen sulfide was ever leaked from the facility, but a nearby strip mall was evacuated for several hours. It reopened just before 2 p.m.

Homes were not evacuated because they were upwind from the station.

Firefighters took air samples, and they said the levels were very low in the hot zone.

The fire in the pipe was put out before 2 p.m. and the situation was over.

All lanes of Bradley at St. Johns Bluff Road were closed for hours.