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RFD battles blaze at former packing plant

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Roswell Fire Department crews spent a good part of Saturday fighting a fire at the former Glover Packing Co. plant at 1007 N. Garden Ave. An RFD spokesperson said the fire had been contained to one portion of the building Saturday evening. (Mike Smith Photo)

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Roswell Fire Department crews spent several hours Saturday fighting a structure fire at 1007 N. Garden Ave.

Todd Wildermuth, RFD’s public information officer, said fire crews responded to the blaze around 2 p.m. at the former Glover Meat Packing Plant.

Eyewitness Mark Sisneros noticed the fire around 5:30 p.m. heading down Garden Avenue. He had to seek another route as the Roswell Police Department put up a barricade near the fire scene.

“You could see the smoke and the fire coming out of the building from the top and the sides,” Sisneros said. “I had to turn around and go back as they had the road blocked off. Everybody was turning around.”

Sisneros noticed a number of fire trucks on scene.

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“The smoke was getting blown by the wind,” Sisneros said. “It looked like it was towards the middle in the back part of the building on the west side. The front side wasn’t as bad. The back side was where all the fire engines were at trying to put the fire out.”

In addition to fire and police crews being called out, personnel from Xcel Energy and New Mexico Gas Co. were called out as well.

Xcel spokesperson Wes Reeves said their crews are generally called out by the fire departments in the company’s service territory to disconnect power to help ensure safety for firefighters.

Wildermuth said RFD managed to contain the fire to one portion of the building Saturday evening around 7:30 p.m.

“But assessment of the total damage is pending,” Wildermuth said. “Cause will be under investigation.”

Glover Meat Packing Plant ceased operations in Roswell in 1981. According to the Loopnet.com, the building sits on 30 acres and was built in 1973.

Senior Writer Lisa Dunlap contributed to this report and can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 310, or at reporter02@rdrnews.com.

General assignment reporter Mike Smith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 307, or at sports2@rdrnews.com.