UPDATE: In an update Sunday night, The Jordan Bridge remains closed following Friday’s fire. Officials are waiting to hear from Wheelabrator and the City of Portsmouth, who are working to determine the structural condition of the bridge.

The bridge has remained opened on a limited basis for Norfolk Naval Shipyard parking and local businesses adjacent to the Jordan Bridge. The bridge is only accessible via Chesapeake/I-464 at this time.


PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Crews were on the scene of an industrial fire in Portsmouth early Friday afternoon.

According to police, the call for the fire came in around 11:50 a.m. at the Wheelabrator trash plant in the 3800 block of Elm Avenue.

When crews arrived on the scene, they found heavy smoke coming from the rear of the building, the roof area, and the structure that houses the conveyor belt.

An employee reported to crews that the conveyor belt, which moves the trash, was on fire. All the employees who were in the building were able to exit safely.

Firefighters established a collapse zone due to the instability of the structure and then positioned several aerial ladder trucks and used master streams to battle the blaze.

After fighting the fire from the exterior, firefighters were able to enter the structure and initiate an interior fire attack on the topmost floor.

The Incident Commander deemed the fire under control at 1:47 p.m. Crews remain on the scene at this time to search for hotspots and perform overhauls.

The Jordan Bridge via Elm Avenue is closed indefinitely due to the fire. There is no ETA for reopening.

Residents are asked to stay away from the area as crews respond to the fire and to find alternative routes of travel. There were no injuries reported.

This was not the first fire at the Wheelabrator. Earlier this year, the conveyor belt at the plant caught fire, but was quickly extinguished.

No further information has been released.

Check WAVY.com for the latest updates.