Ethan Allen Furniture Sawdust Fire Closes Plant

By Wade Vonasek | Posted: 05/01/2013 3:41PM


Ethan Allen fireWCAX ORLEANS, VT — Fire erupted inside two sawdust silos at an Ethan Allen's casegoods plant in Orleans, VT, on April 30, temporarily closing the factory. There were no reports of injuries among the estimated 400 employees.

According to a problem with the motor that brings sawdust from the boiler room at the furniture factory to the silos sparked the fire. The two silos typically hold about two and a half 18-wheelers' worth of sawdust, reports.

Fox44/ABC22 reported that a bearing in the auger, which connects silo 1 and silo 2, seized up causing sawdust in the first silo to combust. The fire spread through the blower pipe and ignited sawdust in the second silo, Orleans Assistant Fire Chief Scott Burdick told the news station.

The Orleans facility is one of four Ethan Allen casegoods manufacturing operations. There is a second plant located in Vermont, including one sawmill, one in North Carolina and one in Honduras. The company also has three upholstery plants - two in Maiden, NC, and one in Mexico, and a home accessory plant in New Jersey. 2012 net sales for the company were $729.4 million. Watch a video from

WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-


About the Author

Wade Vonasek

Wade Vonasek

Wade Vonasek is a freelance writer and editor, with nearly 10 years experience writing about the woodworking industry. He lives and works in Bristol, WI, and can be reached at

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