Scene cleared after fire at Albuquerque recycling plant

Local News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The scene is clear after a large fire broke out at a recycling plant in Albuquerque on Tuesday. Smoke from Friedman Recycling on Edith near Montano could be seen for miles.

Fire crews worked for hours to get the flames under control and more than 20 trucks were at the scene including foam trucks and bulldozers. The cause of the fire is still unknown at this time.

A fire broke out at the same recycling plant in 2019. The owner says that one was started by an old lithium battery that someone tried to recycle.

“Anytime there’s a fire it’s always upsetting unfortunately, it comes with the territory because we’re dealing with combustible products,” said Morris Friedman, owner of Friedman Recycling. The Bernalillo County Fire Department reports no one was hurt in the incident.

Sky News 13 flew over the scene on Wednesday and could see charred recyclables the fire left behind as crews begin the cleanup. There was a lot to burn at the plant, which the city uses to dump the public’s recycling.

Matthew Whelan, the director of solid waste said they drop hundreds of tons to the recycling plant each week. “On average we send to Friedman between 725 and 800 tons (recyclables) per week,” said Whelan. “Just depending on the week. Sometimes it’s a little bit more based on the season.” 

He said his crews couldn’t pick up all the blue recycling bins Tuesday due to the fire. However, crews are now all caught up with their recycling rounds.

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