Huge Fire Erupts at Scranton Army Ammunition Plant, the U.S.’s Primary Producer of 155mm Artillery Shell Bodies

Credit: NEPA Fire Photography

A huge fire erupted at the Scranton Army Ammunition Plant in Scranton, Pennsylvania, according to initial reports.

The blaze at this crucial facility, responsible for producing the metal bodies of the U.S. Army’s 155 mm artillery shells, prompted an immediate response from local firefighting units.

NEPA Fire Photography first reported the incident, noting that Scranton firefighters were actively battling a structure fire at the Army Ammunition Plant location on Cedar Avenue.

The Scranton Army Ammunition Plant (SCAAP), a key component of the national defense infrastructure, is operated by General Dynamics and plays a pivotal role in manufacturing artillery projectiles for the U.S. military.

The situation appeared dire as “heavy smoke venting from the roof” was reported, with firefighting crews working tirelessly to control the blaze.

Efforts to extinguish the fire saw some progress, as it was later reported that “the bulk of the fire [had been] knocked down.”

Additional support was called in from the Greenwood Fire Department for ventilation assistance and the Chinchilla Hose Company of South Abington Township to stand by with a foam trailer, according to report.

Scranton Army Ammunition Plant released the following statement:

At approximately 3:20 p.m. today, emergency personnel responded to a fire at the heat treat building at Scranton Army Ammunition Plant.

The fire has since been extinguished, with no injuries and all personnel accounted for. The cause of the fire is unknown at this time. We are currently assessing the damage to determine possible impacts to facilities or production.

The safety of our workforce is our primary concern, and we appreciate the quick response of our emergency personnel.

According to The Bridge, the Scranton Army Ammunition Plant is a vital asset to the United States Army Joint Munitions Command (JMC) and the broader military infrastructure.

Managed by General Dynamics-Ordnance and Tactical Systems (GD-OTS), the facility’s production capabilities include a wide array of military munitions such as 155mm and 105mm artillery projectiles, various mortar projectiles, and naval gun projectiles, among others.

It currently produces:

  • 155mm and 105mm artillery projectiles
  • the 105mm PGU-45/B High Fragmentation (HF) Cartridges
  • 120mm Mortar (M120/M121) Projectiles
  • M931 Full Range Training Cartridges (FRTC)
  • M933 and M934 High Explosive (HE)
  • M930 and M983 Illumination
  • M929 White Phosphorus (WP) Smoke
  • 5″/54 (5 inch) Naval Gun Projectile.
  • 8 inch (203mm) and 175mm artillery
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