Accidental fire started with worker cremating 500-pound body

The fire began when an employee was cremating a 500-pound body. (NBC/WWBT)

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (NBC/WWBT) — A crematorium in Virginia caught fire Wednesday because its load was extra-large, according to officials. The fire began when an employee was cremating a 500-pound body.

“It was no negligence involved in it. My guys, we did all we could,” said Southside Cremation Jerry Hendrix. “Once it started, the grease hit the roof and started the fire. The only thing we could do is dial 911 and get the fire department here.”

The manager says extra steps are taken with such large bodies and that their worker did take the right steps. The fire was contained to the roof, and there were no injuries.

Other bodies in the facility at the time were not damaged. The fire marshal is ruling it an accident.

This has happened from time to time at cremation facilities across the country.

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