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Agway Fertilizer

Sitting in the small village of Lyons, NY, the remains of the Agway Fertilizer facility sit, visibly decaying to those passing by. At least nine years of non-existent maintenance, combined with above average amounts of phosphorus, nitrogen, and related products, have hastened the demise of the facility, to the point where one must seriously consider the risks they take while visiting the facility.

Location attributes for Agway Fertilizer
Location   Lyons, New York
Built :: Closed   Unknown :: 2002
Status   Abandoned
Difficulty   ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
Hazards Risk   ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Security Risk   ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆
AUE Rating   ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

Little can be found about this particular facility; one can only assume that it was abandoned either prior to 2002, or at the same time that parent company Agway filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy at the end of 2002. Either way, the end result is the same.

Walking into the facility, one is greeted immediately by the smell of ammonia and other nitrogen compounds. Interestingly enough, this was only around the entrance; pushing deeper into the facility the ammonia vanished, only to be replaced by a new set of hazards.

You see, fertilizer and the raw components of it have two rather undesired effects here. First, they hasten the growth of mold. And there was lots of mold. Entire sheets of plywood had been reduced to a pulp-like substance, just waiting for an inattentive explorer to step in the wrong place and go crashing through. The still relatively intact boards were not much safer, given the way they flexed with even the slightest weight on them.

Second, the steel frame of the building was not impressed with the pockets of ammonia in the building. Entire steel girders had rotted through, the ammonia again hastening the corrosion. One particular girder was nothing more than the flanges; the web had rotted through and was nothing more than a gaping hole. And without the web, the flanges themselves had warped beyond belief. I did spend very long on the floor in the vicinity of said girder.

In fact, I didn't spend very much time up on the catwalks, period. I wasn't keen on the idea of crashing through the floor, having already taken a lengthy fall earlier in my life and not being particularly in the mood to repeat that experience. As such, I spend most of my time on the ground floors.

The group I was with did make note of a black SUV circling the property several times, so someone knew we were inside. They did briefly enter the property at one point, but didn't actively search for us. We did leave without issue, so I'm not sure what this entire episode was about.

The facility was unique, as far as my explorations have gone, but there wasn't a lot to it. As such, I doubt I will be returning anytime soon.

Decomposition - July 2011
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