Festivities of first Saranac Thursday of Season takes dramatic turn


UTICA - It was the first Saranac Thursday of 2008 and the annual outdoor party at F.X. Matt Brewery quickly took a turn in just a matter of minutes, as a call came in of a fire in what we now know is the canning and packing area of the brewery.

Shortly after 5:00 PM a call came of a fire in the canning and packing area of the brewery. Officials say it may have broke out in the high-cone machine which puts plastic on boxes.

The premises were evacuated and residents in the surrounding area were removed from their homes due to the smoke and fumes that officials say could be toxic.

That smoke continues to fill the air and Chief Brooks told us that he has gotten calls that the smoke has reached as far as East Utica. When asked if the smoke and fume posed a danger, Chief Brooks recommended remaining indoors.

The chief said crews have been able to get half the area under control but are still working on the other half and various hot spots.

Another word late Thursday is that part of Varick Street has been re-opened.

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