Neighbors react to destruction of O.Z. Tyler Distillery


OWENSBORO, Ky. (WEHT) – The toppling of OZ Tyler Rickhouse was heard and felt by many.

And this whiskey warehouse accident is already having a ripple effect across the community.

“That’s going to be a big cleanup job” 

That was Rob Whitaker’s first reaction when he drove by the distillery on his way to work late Sunday night, moments after the collapse.

“When I was leaving my neighborhood to go to work I turned onto Eewing road where the whiskey warehouse is right next to it and there were a couple pickup trucks already in the street there with lights shining on it and you could tell the whole side of the building had collapsed and the barrels were pouring out of it.”

More than 4,000 barrels came crashing down around Midnight.

Daylight saw crews from across the state working hard to find a solution.

“We’re still kind of assessing the damage right now. We’ve had EPA here, luckily everything’s been contained, no spillage.”

One major concern is the power lines. Owensboro Municipal Utility cut off power to the building.

Call estimates the barrel could take a month or more.

Joe Autry lives and operates a business next door, and says he hopes the repairs get done quicker.

“They wanted to go back in our field, so we opened the gate up and let them to back into our field to do what they needed to do so, we’re trying to get along with them as long as they’re trying to get along with us.”

The first phase of this massive cleanup operation is underway Monday evening with the OMU working to take down power lines close to the distillery. 

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(This story was originally published on June 17, 2019)

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