Firefighters were battling a blaze Friday morning in the area of Columbia Quarry Co. outside Columbia.
Officials said the remains of seven torn-down structures were set ablaze at an abandoned property on the quarry.
Multiple fire departments were summoned to the area. White smoke could be seen in the area. Columbia Fire Chief Mike Roediger said the fire was discovered around 10 a.m. Friday.
Fire trucks were responding to the area near Bluffside Road and Metter Road. A large quarry, Columbia Quarry Co., was nearby.
St. Clair County deputies were also on scene. Investigator Scott Toth said the seven structures set on fire had been torn down previously. Authorities said they did not know who started the fire, but Toth said there would be no criminal charges. He said an environmental officer is set to look into what appeared to be an illegal burn.
Firefighters at the scene requested an ambulance crew to provide medical help to four firefighters, who apparently were having difficulty due to heat. Temperatures in the 90s were causing a dangerous situation for firefighters.
Roediger said there were no injuries.
Fire crews were called from Columbia, Prairie Du Pont, Millstadt, Camp Jackson and Waterloo. Pumpers and tankers were among the trucks deployed. Roediger said Columbia Fire Department was back in service by 2 p.m.
Scott Wuerz and Kaitlyn Schwers