This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Firefighters rushed to the area of the Tesoro Corp. crude oil refinery early Saturday as flames and thick smoke filled Salt Lake City's northern dawn horizon.
Salt Lake City Fire Department spokesman Jasen Asay said the three-alarm fire, spotted just before 6 a.m. in a salvage yard field adjacent and east of Tesoro property, was fought by about 60 firefighters and numerous engines. By 8 a.m., the flames had been extinguished.
"The fire was not on Tesoro's property itself but in a two-acre field that was a salvage yard. There were old tires, wood pallets, wood piles, some trees and a shed that burned," Asay said. "Tesoro did assist Salt Lake City firefighters with its own engine, but the flames never burned into the refinery property."
However, flames did cause mostly exterior damage to rear, patio and office areas of the nearby Garage Bar. Firefighters removed computers and file cabinets to save them from being damaged as they fought that portion of the blaze, which was out within an hour of their arrival.
The bar's owners expected to be closed for at least two weeks, Asay said.
Investigators were on scene Saturday to determine the cause of the fire. A contingent of firefighters also remained through the afternoon to guard against any hot spots reigniting, Asay said.
Tesoro, based in San Antonio, Texas, processes more than 60,000 barrels per day at the plant at 1200 N. Beck St. It receives shipments of crude oil from eastern Utah, Colorado, Wyoming and Canada to process into gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, heavy fuel oils and liquefied petroleum gas.
Through a network of terminals and pipelines, those products are then distributed to markets in Utah, Idaho, eastern Washington, Nevada and Wyoming. The refinery also supplies jet fuel to the Salt Lake City airport.