One of two facilities in the world used to manufacture the lacquer discs used to make vinyl records has faced a dire setback. The Apollo Masters production and storage facility in Banning, California has been forced to discontinue operations due to a blaze whose full implications are not yet known.
80 firefighters were called to the site of the plant on February 6th. Nobody was injured according to a statement on ApolloMasters.com, but the building was damaged severely enough to warrant concern from stakeholders in the recording industry and beyond.
“The best news is all of our employees are safe,” reads a passage of the statement. “We are uncertain of our future at this point and are evaluating options as we try to work through this difficult time.”
Apollo Masters is reportedly responsible for 80-90% of the lacquer discs used for vinyl records. The blaze is all the more tragic on account of vinyl’s recent resurgence; Billboard estimated that 26% of album purchases were on vinyl in 2019.
The cause of the fire is being investigated.