The center of the fire, in which no one was injured, started at AmRep, a Marietta-based company that makes chemicals for aerosols, liquids and lubricants, said Public Information Officer David Baldwin with Marietta Police.
On Saturday afternoon, firefighters were still putting out hot spots, and police remained at the scene to maintain safety around the area.
“(Fire department) investigators are about to go through with some of the AmRep people and start the investigation,” Baldwin said. “They won’t have any answers today.”
The damage to the area was extensive, and the fire spread beyond just AmRep buildings.
“It did damage to another building that was to the right of it. It was another business,” Baldwin said.
Baldwin did not know the name of the second damaged business.
The AmRep buildings have been the scene of at least one fire in the past, Baldwin said.
“I do know of one back in 1989 where there was an explosion (at AmRep) that seriously injured two people,” he said.
Baldwin did not know any more details about that fire.
When the fire department can be sure the area is safe, investigators and AmRep representatives will begin looking into what caused the fire. But, the process will be complicated by the amount of rubble the fire created.
“They’re going to need some heavy machinery to move some of the rubble,” Baldwin said. “There was one main building in the middle that was completely leveled by the blaze.”
The fire was first reported to police and firefighters by a Marietta police officer at about 6:30 p.m. Friday. Baldwin said the officer saw the main building engulfed in flames, and no one was inside at the time.
Cobb Parkway was closed between the Canton Road Connector and North Marietta Parkway Friday night into Saturday morning at 5 a.m., Baldwin said, but traffic was minimal. All roads are now open.
On Friday night, about 25 emergency units from both Cobb and Marietta responded to the fire, along with two foam-spraying trucks from Lockheed-Martin.
Baldwin said Friday that the fumes from the fire were not toxic.
Smoke plumes were visible from Interstate 75 late Friday.