Oh sugar! Factory fire unleashes caramel flood

Firefighters attempt to extinguish a fire in a warehouse with sugar at the port of Santos, near Sao Paulo, Brazil. Photo / AFP
Firefighters attempt to extinguish a fire in a warehouse with sugar at the port of Santos, near Sao Paulo, Brazil. Photo / AFP

A fire at a sugar warehouse in southeastern Brazil has been put out after unleashing a flood of caramel that threatened nearby homes.

Firefighters from Santa Adelia, located 371km north of Sao Paulo, and neighbouring towns battled the fire for more than 70 hours, building earth dikes to contain the spreading caramel.

The blaze erupted on Friday in one of the company's two warehouses in Santa Adelia triggering a flow of melted sugar that spread into the town.

"It is now under control," a spokesman for the Agrovia sugar company said on Monday.

Some 28,000 tons of sugar were damaged in the flames, but no injuries were reported.

"Seventeen people had to be evacuated and sheltered in area hotels," the company said.

"It's all back to normal."

The lost sugar was fully insured and represents less than 0.5 per cent of the company's sales, Agrovia said.

The incident occurred a week after a different fire damaged 180,000 tons of raw sugar and injured four people in warehouses owned by Copersucar, the world's largest sugar trader, in Brazil's Santos port.

Santos accounts for more than 60 per cent of the country's sugar exports and Copersucar is responsible for 25 per cent of the sugar shipped through Santos.

- AFP

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