People who live near a Tioga County recycling facility that was destroyed by fire are expressing concerns about air and water quality.

The blaze at the massive Taylor Garbage Service complex on Route 434 in Apalachin was reported around 5:10 p.m. Friday.

Firefighters used hundreds of thousands of gallons of water in an operation that continued Saturday afternoon.

Workers used heavy equipment to remove still-burning material from an Apalachin recycling plant on January 4, 2020. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Some nearby residents said they were worried about exposure to the smoke that continued to pour from the building. Others who use wells for their water said they were concerned about toxins in the runoff from the water used to attack the fire.

Apalachin fire chief Mike George said Tioga County health officials were being consulted regarding the potential risks posed by the smoke generated by the blaze. He said "it certainly is a concern."

As of early Saturday afternoon, county and town of Owego officials had issued no health or safety advisories.

Smoke drifted across Hilton Road in Apalachin as a woman walked her dog on January 4, 2020. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

George estimated more than 600,000 gallons of water had been poured on the burning structure over the course of the protracted operation.

More than 100 firefighters from about two dozen departments battled the blaze. George said no injuries were reported.

New York State Police fire investigators from Sidney were on the scene to assist Tioga County officials in identifying the cause of the blaze.

Firefighters at the Taylor Garbage Service recycling plant in Apalachin on January 3, 2020. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph:

For breaking news and updates on developing stories, follow @BinghamtonNow on Twitter.

Enter your number to get our free mobile app