Omaha Explosion Claims the Lives of Two WorkersBy: Jasmine Allen - January 20, 2014
An explosion at an Omaha, Neb., factory left two dead and ten hospitalized on Monday morning.
Thirty-eight staff members were working at the International Nutrition animal-feeding plant when a sudden explosion knocked out the lights in the building.
Authorities are clueless to what may have caused the incident but reported that witnesses saw the back wall of the building collapse.
Thirty-eight-year-old Kendrick Houston was working on the main floor when he noticed a tremble from beneath the building’s floor. He reported to the Omaha World-Herald that the event happened so fast that he and another co-worker immediately reacted and ran for the exit.
“There was this real loud crackling sound, and the lights went off. I saw a spark, and there was a big ball of flame coming from the southwest corner of the building,” he said.
According to a Fox News report via the Associated Press, 21-year-old Nate Lewis was working on the first floor when he heard the explosion. He resorted to using his cell phone light to crawl outside to safety. Shaken up by the events, Lewis even made a statement that he believes he won’t be returning back to his job as a production line worker.(image)
Omaha’s Fire Chief Bernie Kanger asserts that no hazardous chemicals played a part in the blast, but due to safety risks, the wreckage has yet to be removed.
Kanger also insists that his team are taking their time to sift through the rubble left by the explosion.
“We haven’t cleared the building yet because of the significant risk to our people,” Kanger told AP.
Seven injured workers have refused medical treatment while nineteen others have yet to be accounted for.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is still investigating the reason behind the explosion.
Kanger confirms that the death toll may rise in numbers as the fire department and search-and-rescue experts continue their search through the debris.