(Millington, TN) A group of Pollution Control Industries employees could only watch as firefighters battle the flames at their workplace.
"A couple friends of mine were caught in the mess," PCI employee Harold Payne said."I'm hoping they are okay."
Many of the men who came to watch the fire had just ended their shift at the plant 3:30 p.m.
An hour later, the fire broke out.
Two employees were injured.
One of the men was taken to MED by helicopter.
"My thoughts and prayers go out to their families," Payne said.
As Payne prays for his friends recovery, he says he's not all that shocked this happened.
In 2010, there was a similar fire at the plant. No one was injured in that fire.
According to an OSHA report an employee was engulfed in flames after an explosion in 2001. He suffered burns to 65 percent of his body and later died from his injuries.
"That's what we work around. Hazardous materials and that comes along with it."
Fire crews tell us they are familiar with the facility due to previous calls there.
Both employees injured in this fire remain in stable condition at the MED.
Three firefighters were also injured.
Two firefighters - one from the Memphis Fire Department and the other from the Shelby County Fire Department - were treated for heat exhaustion.
Another Shelby County firefighter also received treatment after injuring his shoulder while working to extinguish the fire.
An event at Memphis Motorsports Park tonight was cancelled due to the fire and was rescheduled for Friday.