A large industrial fire at a federal Superfund site in central Tennessee was almost contained Thursday evening, a day and a half after it started.

Kevin Eichinger, on-scene coordinator for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, said in a phone interview that officials were monitoring air quality around the site in rural Hickman County, southwest of Nashville. The fire was about 95 percent contained.

About 300 people were evacuated and four schools were closed after the fire started Wednesday morning at a plastics recycling business on part of the former Wrigley Charcoal Plant.

Firefighting efforts were abandoned Wednesday afternoon over fears that nearby propane tanks could explode. The fire eventually burned away from the tanks and contractors with heavy equipment began smothering the fire with dirt Thursday morning.

By Thursday afternoon some residents were allowed to return home, County Mayor Steve Gregory said at a news conference, and there were plans for schools to reopen on Friday. There have been no reports of injuries. - AP