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Trailer full of apples catches fire at New England Produce Center in Chelsea

A trailer caught fire in Chelsea Monday morning and destroyed a truckload of apples, fire officials said.

The trailer’s refrigeration unit started smoking as workers were emptying apples onto a dock around 11 a.m. at the New England Produce Center at 300 Beacham St., said Chelsea Deputy Fire Chief Robert Houghton.

“It was tough to get at. There were pallets of apples at the front. We had to break through them to get hose lines in between them. It wasn’t one of the biggest fires, but we were obstructed by pallets of apples we had to remove,” Houghton said.

Chelsea firefighters spent 20 minutes extinguishing the blaze, Houghton said. No one was injured.

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The truck driver had already removed the tractor from the trailer when the fire ignited, firefighters said.

“There were reports before we arrived of smoke coming from the refrigeration unit on the front part of the trailer that keeps the produce cold, so we’re assuming it was that,” Houghton said.

The trailer was half full of apples, which all burnt in the fire, firefighters said.

Chelsea firefighters are investigating the cause of the blaze, Houghton said. Firefighters did not have a damage estimate.


Alyssa Lukpat can be reached at alyssa.lukpat@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @AlyssaLukpat.