Kirby Tire Recycling Facility, Inc. Online Media Kit

Ohio EPA appreciates your interest in covering the Kirby Tire dump cleanup near Sycamore. To facilitate your reporting, we have created this online media kit. If you need more information or would like to schedule an interview to speak with a staff member about the project or scrap tire cleanups in Ohio, please contact Dina Pierce by e-mail or phone at (614) 644-2160.


Kirby Tire Recycling
Photo Archive

Please feel free to use the graphics on this page with your articles. We have provided captions for each. The images on this page are low resolution graphics. Please click on the desired image to download a high resolution copy. If you have problems downloading the files, please contact Dina Pierce or e-mail the Webmaster.


The site as it appeared in December 2006. The white sheeting visible in the lower right corner covers burned tires that have been uncovered during the final phase of cleanup.


The Kirby Tire site as it appeared in mid-1999, before the arson fire burned more than five million tires. The section that burned is in the right front section of the photo. Approximately 25 million tires were stored at the site.


Dirt mounds in the right foreground cover more than five million tires that burned in an August 1999 arson. The photo was taken in September 1999, about a month after the fire was extinguished by burying the tires with soil.


Work began in June 2006 to excavate burnt tires, ash and contaminated soil from the August 1999 fire. The burning tires were buried to smother the fire after water and foam proved ineffective.


A contractor works to continue removing tires from the Kirby Scrap Tire site in 2002.


Approximately 250 firefighters, the Ohio Air National Guard, U.S. EPA, Ohio EPA and others spent five days battling the August 1999 arson fire at the Kirby Tire site. Four young men have been convicted of setting the fire.


Scrap tires are loaded onto a shredder at the Kirby Tire site near Sycamore in Wyandot County.


Scrap tires at the Kirby Tire site were shredded and taken to area landfills where they were used in place of sand and gravel as bedding for the landfills’ drainage system.


One of the massive scrap tire piles located at the Kirby site. State regulations limit the height and width of tire piles and require fire lanes between piles. Few areas at the Kirby Tire site met these requirements.


Tires that didn’t completely burn in the August 1999 arson at Kirby Tire, typically ended up melting. Some melted so badly, they are no longer recognizable as tires.


A contractor began digging out burned tires that were buried to put out the August 1999 fire. The clean dirt on top of the piles was used to refill areas on the site that were excavated during firefighting activity. The contaminated soil in and under the burned tires, as well as the burned tires, was taken to a local landfill for disposal.


Oil that seeped out of melting tires during the August 1999 arson fire is pooled among tires uncovered during the final phase of cleanup. More than $7 million was spent treating storm water that soaked into the burned tires, becoming contaminated by the oils and other residual material left by the blaze.


Heavy equipment operators worked with local fire departments and government officials to cover burning tire piles to smother the fire that burned more than 6 million tires in August 1999.


Flames grow smaller as heavy equipment moves dirt over the mounds of burning tires at the Kirby Tire dump in August 1999. Thousands of tons of soil was used to smother the fire after water proved ineffective at dousing the flames.


Flames and smoke rise several stories high behind a barn on the Kirby Tire dump site in rural Wyandot County in August 1999. Four teen-agers were later convicted of starting the fire, which burned more than 6 million tires.


An aerial photo shows the scrap tire dump after all unburned tires were removed from the site in early 2006. The green mounds in the lower left corner covered some 6 million tires buried in 1999 to extinguish a massive fire. A contractor began digging out and disposing of those tires and soil contaminated by the fire in 2006, completing the work in spring 2008.


Tire piles at the Kirby Tire facility easily dwarfed a passenger car. It is important to keep wide fire lanes and limit the size of tire piles to make firefighting easier and keep a fire from spreading to other piles.